Sunday, November 09, 2008


Coming home to Manila after a long absence, I felt like one of those old-time Manileños who resented finding Plaza Goiti gone. I also began to dislike the man whose name replaced it -- Arsenio H. Lacson.

But then, only a couple of years later, after immersing myself in Manila's colorful and multi-faceted culture, the loathing turned into profound admiration, especially after learning about the man's fearless, trenchant, and no-nonesense style of city governance.

Nicknamed the "Arsenic" because of the poison pen that he brandished, his accomplishments -- including being the first in Manila to be reelected to a third term as mayor -- made me reconsider; that perhaps, Lacson himself, would have not approved the idea of renaming Plaza Goiti after him, as well as having that imposing statue erected in his honor.

flamboyant and feisty Visayan, Lacson was a militant journalist and radio program host turned politico. His initial entry into public service was in 1949, when as a member of the Nacionalista Party, he ran for and won a seat in the House of Representatives; thus, becoming Congressman of the 2nd District of Manila. Two years later, for his excellence as a fiscalizer and lawmaker, he was cited as one of the "Ten Most Useful Congressmen" by the media group assigned to cover Congress.

His journey towards a phenomenal true leadership came to a crossroad in 1951, a time when Manila held its first mayoralty elections. Lacson chose to run the path against the Palace candidate Manuel de la Fuente (whose name later replaced Trabajo Street in Sampaloc).

Lacson's ensuing landslide victory was primarily attributed to the voters' aversion to then President Elpidio Quirino, which spilled to de la Fuente; not to mention that old-time Manileños' were known to harbor a penchant for anything opposition; thus, they voted all-out Nacionalista, sweeping in Lacson and almost the entire opposition ticket. Only one Liberal managed to win a council seat: Salvador Mariño.

Lacson's popularity continued to surge while in office
, for he personified an exhilarating gust of wind in an otherwise stifling political arena. With his trademark aviator sunglasses, gaudy shirts and stunning loud barks with equally debilitating bites, Lacson exuded an air of toughness, forcefulness and vigor; qualities that bode well with the post-war Manileños. Indeed, Lacson was not one of those statesmen from the elite class of privileged gentility -- like Quezon, who seemed vaguely jaded, though elegant and eloquent in every measure.

Born in Talisay, Negros Occidental on December 26, 1911, Arsenio H. Lacson obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree at the Ateneo de Manila University. While an undergraduate, he pursued his love for boxing; becoming an adept amateur with a broken nose to show for it, which became a prominent feature of his profile.

At the University of Santo Tomas, he studied law, and passed the bar in 1937. After which he joined the law office of future Senator Vicente Francisco. He subsequently worked at the Department of Justice as an assistant attorney.

Before the outbreak of World War II, Lacson worked as a sportswriter. And when the Japanese forces occupied the country, he joined the Free Philippines underground movement; acting as a lead scout during the Battle for Manila. He also fought in the battle to liberate Baguio City in 1945. For his gallant wartime services, Lacson received citations from the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Sixth United States Army. Years later, when asked by the visiting Japanese Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi if he had learned Japanese during the war, Lacson responded, "I was too busy shooting the Japanese to learn any."

Lacson showed no respect for partisan politics; neither was he inhibited when expressing his sentiments against the Americans who, in turn, likened his brashness with that of Fiorello La Guardia. And like the rambunctious Italian-American New York City mayor, Lacson cleaned up a corrupt administration and a wide-open city by firing 600 incompetent job holders.

A Time article illustrated how Mayor Lacson conducted nightly patrols in a black police car; returning from time to time to a corner table at the lounges of Bay View or Filipinas hotels, where he listened to complaints and requests, or talked profusely on a plugged-in telephone -- "punctuating his conversations with shots of whisky and four-letter expletives." On Sundays, Manileños got to hear their gutsy mayor on a half-hour radio program, pre-recorded with expletives deleted.

Appearing more brawny than brainy, Lacson was forthcoming with his predilection to antagonize; challenging Ferdinand Marcos to a boxing match which the latter didn't accept, and branding a twenty-something city councilor named Ernesto Maceda, with a damning catchphrase, “so young yet so corrupt.”

There was also his feud with President Elpidio Quirino which resulted to Lacson's suspension as Manila's mayor. And years before, in 1947,
President Manuel Roxas, whom he nicknamed "Manny the Weep," ordered his suspension from the airwaves. The incident attracted much international attention: with the former United States Interior Secretary Harold L. Ickes applauding the President's action, while the popular American radio commentator Walter Winchell lambasting the Interior Secretary for it.

Auspiciously for Lacson, in his seemingly endless battles, the popular public opinion remained vociferously on his side.

During his second mayoral term, a group of American mayors cited Manila as one of the ten best-administered cities in the world -- the only city deemed as such in Asia. And during his third term, his intention to run for the presidency became apparent. Unfortunately, he died in mid-term on April 15, 1962. The ten years he served as Manila's mayor were filled with sterling accomplishments, foremost of which was the liquidation of a 21-million peso City Hall debt incurred by the previous nine administrations.

When the second elective mayor, Antonio Villegas, took over the city's helm, he
admirably completed Lacson's unfinished projects -- such as a city hospital (Ospital ng Maynila), a city university (Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila), a city compost plant to recycle garbage, and a city reclamation of the Tondo offshore.

The Manila Zoo and the Quiapo underpass were the other Lacson projects widely cherished by Manileños.
Villegas, upon taking office, immediately decreed that the latter was to bear the name of Arsenio H. Lacson.

Hence, with the issue of Plaza Goiti having been renamed Plaza Lacson, I've taken comfort to what Conrado de Quiros, in his column What's in the name?, had said: "I personally do not mind that Azcarraga gave way to Claro M. Recto and Forbes to Arsenio Lacson. Recto and Lacson were more than politicians, or they showed the best that politicians could be."

Statue of Mayor Arsenio H. Lacson on Baywalk
created by Julie Lluch

Top Photo:

Plaza Lacson (formerly Plaza Goiti) before it was reopened to
vehicular traffic as ordered by incoming mayor elect
Alfredo S. Lim.

Notable quote:

"When people say for instance that our corruption will never be banished, just remember that Arsenio Lacson as Mayor of Manila and Ramon Magsaysay as President brought a clean government." - F. Sionil Jose - Why the Philippines is Standing Still

Special mention:

The father of our fellow blogger, Pete Lacson (Noypetes), is a cousin of Arsenio H. Lacson. Although only a little tyke at that time, Pete remembers the mayoral election that ushered his uncle into City Hall. Pete also remembers visiting the mayor's house with his father on M. Earnshaw Street near the corner of Gov. Forbes Avenue and España.

* * *

Please note:
I very much appreciate my articles and photos appearing on fellow bloggers' sites, popular broadsheets, and local broadcast news segments, but I would appreciate even more a request for permission first.
Thank you!




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posted by Señor Enrique at 7:57 AM


Blogger BCS said...

I enjoyed reading this a GREAT LOT! :)

November 09, 2008 9:52 PM  

Blogger NOYPETES said...

Yes indeed! The greatest mayor Manila ever had!

"In This Corner" was the name of his radio show where he lambasted the crooked politicos back holds barred!

The mayor was also a good cook. "Azucena" was one of his favorites! There is a recipe book of his favorites and some contributions by cousins and friends.

I think the Php to $ exchange rate then was Php4 to $1. American cars cruising Dewey(Roxas)Blvd. at night and Manila was a big tourist trap for Americans and Europeans travelling the southeast.

No nonsense with the mayor when dealing with the crooks to keep Manila and city hall clean!

November 10, 2008 1:24 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

He was a super Mayor...the best one Manila ever had or possibly, ever will my lifetime, at least. He was one of a kind type of politician whose mold was destroyed after he was made.

November 10, 2008 7:32 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

I'm glad you enjoyed this piece, Bryant. The effort was worthwhile then. Thanks!

November 10, 2008 7:38 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi Pete,

With Obama having won the US presidential election, I suddenly found myself longing for a similar figure who could be the Philippines' true leader. But alas! Wala! All I could do is look back.

Mayor Lacson was truly a fine leader. We could definitely use someone like him.

Thank you for the additional trivia! I'll hunt for a copy of his recipe book :)

November 10, 2008 7:46 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

How cruel fate can be sometimes, bertN.

Can you imagine if he had lived long enough to be president? Whoa! He probably could've led the country as the finest and richest in Asia. But then again, as they say, there's a reason for everything. Perhaps, we must wait another while longer for the emergence of another true leader like Lacson.

For now, praying that the gods will recreate the "mold."

November 10, 2008 7:58 AM  

Blogger ka tony said...

Hi Eric,

Again I have to stop what I was doing to give my comment & pay homage the the Greatest Mayor of Manila Arcenio Lacson. The Youngest, the most Daring/Boldest, the most Honest and the first & only Mayor to be Suspended!

I have no problem if we change street names to great Pinoys like Mayor Lacson. Specially replacing streets named after Gringo generals, who killed Pilipino revolutionaries and Spanish conquistadores, who colonized our country.

He was the General Antonio Luna of all Manila's mayors. Like Luna pag nagalit hahamunin ng suntukan, pistol duel or ano man ang gustong "instrument of death" ng kaaway niya! Walang makapalag, specially when he challenged the young ferdinand marcos, tumameme si macoy! Mayor Lacson was an ex-boxer, the reason why he called his radio program "In This Corner" at con todo may "boxing bell" sound effect pa, every time he changed the subject or criticism he was talking about.

Mayor Lacson is related to Aniceto Lacson, a revolutionary general, was elected president of the short-lived Republic of Negros. Mayor Lacson was married to Ms. Luchie Lacson, a very vocal liberated woman so ahead of her time. Their daughter Bingo Lacson was a famous DJ for a radio station. "Teen Time with Bing" was the number one radio program & "the radio program" for teenagers in the early 60s! Bingo opened her program with The Ventures, instrumental version of "Torque" and ended her program with The Zombies, "I Love You" with her "breath whispering voice" saying... "palanga tagid ikaw" in between The Zombies' famous song! The classy Bingo Lacson was the first DJ who played The Beatles in the history of Philippine radio.

Last & not the least of the Lacsons, a great photographer, an Easy Rider & a great drummer, my good friend, Ka Peter, "NOYPETES" to others. To The Greatest Mayor Manila ever had the late Gat Arcenio Lacson & to all the Lacsons... my hats off!

Thanks Eric & best regards,
ka tony

November 10, 2008 9:36 AM  

Blogger nutart said...

Now I know I'm really boba when it comes to a lot of things about Philippine especially Manila history :-).

Thank you again, guys! And I really hope to see all your historical posts on hard copy, Eric!

You know? The only thing I know about Mayor Lacson is the tsismis that he is the actual father of Imee marcos...?

November 10, 2008 10:00 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

How are you, Ka Tony? Hope all is ok with the family and work.

Thank you for once again giving added depth to this article on Mayor Lacson. Gosh ... how our country could use a political leader like him -- highly intelligent, intrepid, and benevolent.

Nakakainggit nga kayo diyan sa America. You just went through a "silent revolution" in which the highest racial ceiling was broken through in the process. Here in the Philippines, with the 2010 presidential election coming up, I am yet to see a "true leader." And I'm afraid that bertN is right, the mold was destroyed after Lacson was created. Pero, sana naman ay hindi pa.

I might have been listening to Bingo Lacson, now that you also mentioned that Zombie song. Wasn;'t there another popular dj, Sonia Basa?

As for Antonio Luna, wasn't there supposed to be a duel between him and Rizal as well after Luna discovered his girl had been smitten by Rizal?

Anyway, thank you and don't work too hard, Ka Tony!

November 10, 2008 10:27 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Carlos Celdran, while doing his CCP guided tour, does mention that "tsismis", Bernadette. It could very well be true ... hehehe.

The old-time taxi drivers I had spoken to, were also quick to point out Mayor Lacson's virility and penchant for beautiful women.

I guess, power is indeed an aphrodisiac :)

November 10, 2008 10:35 AM  

Blogger ka tony said...

Hi Eric & Bernadette,

I was so excited to comment on Mayor Lacson that I forgot to congratulate you Eric for the great research on The Mayor's life.

I hope Ka Peter wouldn't mind me mentioning this, well he probably wouldn't mind 'cuz Ka Peter & I also talked about this. Politicians na "mahilig sa chicks" like Jefferson, Clinton, Kennedy & Mayor Lacson were the ones who were great leaders!!! May "chismis" rin na The Mayor was with a "Dragon Theater French Stripper" in the hotel room, the time of his death! Tama ka Bernadette, the "chismis" about imee marcos might be true. Remember imelda romualdez marcos was Miss. Manila during the time of Mayor Lacson, not only she was hand picked by Mayor Lacson, they were "very closed!" Maybe, just maybe one of the reasons why The Great Mayor challenged macoy, in a "suntukan" at ang duwag na macoy just tumameme. Nagtanan si marcos & imelda, went to Baquio to get married in a small chapel, near today's marcos highway. Siguro brinaso ni macoy ang pare for them to get married, because marcos was married, before getting married to imelda!

Yes Eric, you're right Luna challenged Rizal to a duel because of a Belgian Lady, Rizal like macoy tumameme na lang!

What happened in the US was one of the greatest thing that came about in our life time... the first Black President! After almost four hundred years in US history... Yes We Can!!! For the first time in my life I voted & proud to say I voted the winner & a great man! This historical event will definitely change the "image" & the confidence of African Americans & its about time! Sana ang makasaysayang pangyayaring ito ay mangyari rin sa ating bayan, some day, some day.

Thanks again Eric & congrats your blogs that are getting more & more well research,
ka tony

November 10, 2008 12:50 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

"What happened in the US was one of the greatest thing that came about in our life time... the first Black President! After almost four hundred years in US history... Yes We Can!!!"

That's right, Ka Tony! I was glued to CNN the entire week until after the election.

There has been an Irish Catholic US president, but no Jewish, Italian-American or Latin-American. And as if suddenly, here comes an African-American who broke through all barriers.

"This historical event will definitely change the "image" & the confidence of African Americans & its about time!"

And that includes those of the Asian-Americans and other members of America's diverse ethnic groups!

America is indeed growing up! Incredible!

"Sana ang makasaysayang pangyayaring ito ay mangyari rin sa ating bayan, some day, some day."

Harinawa, Ka Tony. Ito ang pinagdadasal ko!

"I hope Ka Peter wouldn't mind me mentioning this, well he probably wouldn't mind 'cuz Ka Peter & I also talked about this. Politicians na "mahilig sa chicks" like Jefferson, Clinton, Kennedy & Mayor Lacson were the ones who were great leaders!!"

Hopefully, Pete will return and add a comment in this regard as he had mentioned in an email he sent me :)

And what I had told him is that despite the eyebrow-raising affairs with beautiful women, at least leaders like Clinton and John Kennedy were never embroiled in any political scandal like Reagan, older Bush, Nixon, and etc.

As for our beloved Pinoy political leaders, please add our Congressman of the 2nd District -- Joaquin Roces. Throughout my growing up years until I left for the States prior to Martial Law, he was our congressman. He was an exemplary public servant. His only fault: he had a 'quirida'. But that was about it. He was never involved in any political scandal or corrupt dealings.

Joaquin Roces was also the one who made it possible for me to become a Jai-Alai amateur player, though I was never good enough to turn pro as my cousin Ferdie was :)

Maraming salamat, Ka Tony!

November 10, 2008 1:43 PM  

Blogger nutart said...

again thank to you both Ka Tony and Eric...and all the best of Luck and Prayers to President Barack Obama! May he be known in history as the US president not just being black but also who really made a meaningful change after all these contemporary US presidents. Of course, easier said than done! ;-) So many corporate elites to contend with.

Again with Lacson. was it the late actress Charito Solis he was with when he had his heart attack? Talagang puro tsismis yata ang alam ko about Lacson ;->

November 10, 2008 5:55 PM  

Blogger Dennis Villegas said...

Mayor Lacson sure is a very colorful character. I read quite a bit about him from old clippings in our family library, like his mediation to make Imelda Miss Manila, and his relationship with--well, everyone knows it--Charito Solis. I'm not sure if these were true or just urban legends, but they add to the colorful career of certainly Manila's greatest Mayor.
Btw, I myself am close relative to Mayor Villegas, and I know how much Yeba admires Lacson!

November 10, 2008 9:18 PM  

Blogger Dennis Villegas said...

By the way senor, I just discovered your flickr and currently viewing and enjoying your photos..thanks!

November 10, 2008 9:19 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi Bernadette,

Obama also has the youth behind him as well -- highly educated and idealistic. Perhaps, the oligarchs will not be as demanding as with Obama as they had been with the previous administrations. I guess, his chief of staff, Emmanuel, will help him handle the corporate elites and the old-time oligarchs.

I'm really praying that Obama succeeds in all his goals :)

I can imagine the rest of the world once again warming up to the US with him as leader.

November 10, 2008 9:27 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi Dennis!

Mayor Antonio Villegas was the mayor I had gotten to know while growing up. He was still the mayor when I left for the States. The mayors after him I wouldn't know about anymore due to my absence.

I am planning to also do a feature on Mayor Villegas. Hope I can bother you for some info on him :)

That flickr account was the very first I had when I got into blogging (Wish You Were Here), but has since maxed out my free account, and haven't been updating it ... hehehe.

November 10, 2008 9:36 PM  

Blogger NOYPETES said...

"Last & not the least of the Lacsons, a great photographer, an Easy Rider & a great drummer, my good friend, Ka Peter, "NOYPETES" to others."

Naks naman kung magbigay ng pa-puri itong si Ka Tony,Eric, nakaka-panayo ng balahibo at napa-ihi tuloy ako sa tuwa! Hayaan mo Ka Tony, hahakutin ko ulit sa garahe ang aking mga tambol at ako'y mag-sasanay muli ng pag-tatambol dahil medyo kalawang na ang mga paa't kamay ko sa pag hagupit ng drumsticks at kita'y mag-tutugtugan ng mga paborito mong awitin ng "Zombies".

November 11, 2008 12:43 AM  

Blogger Panaderos said...

Mayor Lacson would have been the best President we never had. Sayang.

November 11, 2008 4:35 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

"Turn of the Season" is an old-time favorite of mine by the Zombies, Pete!

November 11, 2008 6:30 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

I can only imagine where we'd be as a nation had he served a couple of terms as President, Panaderos. Sayang talaga!

November 11, 2008 6:31 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

As usual great info on an illustrious historical figure of Manila :) Thanks for sharing

November 12, 2008 8:35 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

My pleasure, BW! Glad you enjoyed reading about a true leader of ours.

November 13, 2008 7:57 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow that plaza looks nice! Wait... Is it still like that? Anyway, all this talk about Obama is really fascinating because he has yet to prove himself. Just like Erap, I think he only got the popular vote. Most people you talk to who voted for Obama doesn't even know why they did so. Most of them say "because he's black" but that's not what he is. So I think all praises are nice but he still has to prove himself.

November 16, 2008 1:00 AM  

Blogger ka tony said...

"Most people you talk to who voted for Obama doesn't even know why they did so."

WOW!!!, this is serious accusation! I for one who voted for the first time in my life, voted for Obama, because I seriously know why I voted for him & for the same reason voted for the first time! Of course any newly elected politician have to prove himself & it doesn't mean that as soon as he step into the White House, suddenly the economy, war, depression, housing, health problems will be solve! Majority of us in the US understand that the process of solving these problems will take years, which his predecessors Republican politician mess up the US economy & the whole world!

The problems bush & his fellow republicans created made Obama won the election. Colorblindness of Americans specially the young, was just secondary!!! For your information!

I hope & pray someday change will happen in our country by an "Honest Pilipino President Messiah"
ka tony

November 16, 2008 7:43 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

And the expectation for him to succeed is overwhelming, DCIntern. We could only hope that he puts togethery a smart team that will help him manifest those changes that he speaks of.

The truly dark side of his victory is the growing cases of race threats and crimes since the election -- according to Mark Potok, director of the Intelligence Project at the Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors hate crimes.

There have been reports of cross burnings, including schoolchildren chanting "Assassinate Obama." Black figures hung from nooses. Racial epithets scrawled on homes and cars.

Incidents around the country referring to President-elect Barack Obama are dampening the postelection glow of racial progress and harmony, highlighting the stubborn racism that remains in America.

According to some news ports, from California to Maine, police have documented a range of alleged crimes, from vandalism and vague threats to at least one physical attack. Insults and taunts have been delivered by adults, college students and second-graders.

November 16, 2008 8:14 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

And if I may add, Ka Tony, though not as worse, but nonetheless serious, George W's father's ineffectual leadership also led to an economic downturn. I remember how bad the economy during that period that in his final year in office, no one would bother watch his motorcade whenever he was in Manhattan. Actually, many New Yorkers voiced out their annoyance at the traffic his motorcade would cause.

- "I hope & pray someday change will happen in our country by an "Honest Pilipino President Messiah"

I pray for this each and every day, Ka Tony!

November 16, 2008 8:26 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok maybe I used the wrong word. I don't mean all as in all, I was just trying to make a point. I'm a Republican but I did vote for Obama because I liked his plans for the healthcare system, social security, energy, immigration, etc. I did not vote for him because he was more popular and especially not because he is a black person.

November 16, 2008 11:37 AM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi DCIntern!

Looking at the other side of the coin, From what I heard, there were also Pinoys who voted for McCain simply because Obama is black.

I'd like to share with you an excerpt from Conrado de Quiros PDI column:


I myself was astonished to hear that many Filipinos here and in the United States actually favored McCain. I should have known better. The reason for that is in part political. This country is more conservative, or rightist, about America than Americans. I saw a great deal of that in the aftermath of 9/11, when compatriots vowed death to America's enemies. I myself got threatening letters from readers who (quite literally) violently disagreed with my criticisms of George W. Bush and his brand of anti-terrorism. The same was true with the American invasion of Iraq, many Filipinos being only too quick to wave the American flag, which they saw as indistinguishable from their own. Hell, in a survey of public figures three or four years ago, while pretty nearly all local officials were held in contempt by the public, Bush was held in the highest esteem by it.

But it's even worse than political conservatism, or fascism. It's racism. We are one of the most racist people in the world.

I've seen that among Filipino communities in the United States. Some try to dissimulate the bigotry, complaining of their black neighbors as being disruptive, as being prone to violence, as having little education. The last is the most often cited, Filipino expatriates particularly in the United States taking pride in their college degrees, which they take blacks to universally not possess.

Others do not bother to hide it at all. Someone put it to me rather curiously, which I haven't forgotten to this day. He made it a point to dress nattily to go to his blue-collar work. A daily ritual that included shaving closely and slapping on cologne. When I asked him why he did this when his American friends did not, he said, "Me kulay ka na nga, hindi ka pa magpopostura." That's not so easy to translate, (very) roughly: "When you're dark-skinned, you've got to make up for it in some way."

Weirdly enough, in the reckoning of many Filipinos abroad, particularly in the United States, they are higher in the pecking order of color by having fairer skins than blacks. Even more weirdly enough, in their reckoning, the more they internalize and project the deep-seated biases of the white community against blacks, the more they become acceptable in the eyes of that community. When in fact they merely make assholes of themselves.

No, I'm not surprised at all to hear Thompson say that a close Filipino friend of his preferred Hillary Clinton because Obama is black. The guy at least has the virtue of being honest about his stupidity.

It's execrable behavior and is truly unworthy of any serious person. Which makes you wonder how many serious persons reside in this country. For the affliction isn't just local, it's national. The sentiment in fact is unworthy of any serious nation, which makes you wonder if we are a serious nation at all.

I've always said that we Filipinos start being racist not just when we go abroad but even while we languish here like prisoners dreaming of escape. Nothing shows that more than whitening lotion, which Thompson rightly points to. That has got to be one of the most mind-boggling things for foreigners who come here to get a tan. It speaks volumes about the mentality of the colonized. If you are dark-skinned in this country, you are reduced either to an object of ridicule or to comic relief. Spanish and American rule may have physically gone, but not so their psychological residue. To this day, I cannot forget what the mother of a Filipino contestant to a world beauty contest said, which was that she couldn't understand how the judges could prefer a "negra" to her daughter who was a mestiza.

Even now we suffer the fate of a people who have been whitewashed. By seeing only what is light, we are constantly kept in the dark.


Here's the link:

November 16, 2008 2:00 PM  

Blogger ka tony said...

"...but nonetheless serious, George W's father's ineffectual leadership also led to an economic downturn."

Amen, amen Eric!

It was tight security as well when he visited SF, during his term, so as the younger bush!

Only some of midwestern & southern states are die hard religious conservatives, but then again it's changing. There was a massive turnout in this election because of young & first time voters, which shows majority were sick & tired of bush & his republican clan protecting their "finance culprits."

I didn't vote for McCain, because he's white, I'm scared that he's old, might not finish his term & Sarah Palin who's extravagant as imelda marcos, dumb as imelda marcos, think like imelda marcos & talks like imelda marcos will take over!!! Nor I voted for Obama because he's black or his promise to take care of health care system, social security, energy & immigration, we heard these before from past politicians. I voted for Obama, because of what he went though, brought up by a single Mom living on green stamps, lived in a 3rd world country, exposed to poverty, different cultures, racial prejudice, religion & ideology! With the kind of exposure I'm sure he learned a lot about the reality of life.

Obama was not like other politicians who didn't have any idea what & where Vietnam & Iraq is, or mistaken Africa as a country, rather than a continent! For these very simple reasons I voted for him!

I hope Obama was molded from the "recreated mold" for ideal politicians by the Gods, which you Eric & bertN mentioned. At panalagin natin Eric ay magkatotoo na dumating sa madaling panahon ang nabangit ng ating katotong Ka Peter... the Pilipino President Messiah!

Maraming salamat na muli,
ka tony

November 16, 2008 4:34 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

Hi Ka Tony,

On the onset of the Democratic Party primary, I erroneously predicted that America wasn't ready for a black president as they would be for a woman -- Hillary Clinton. Needless to say who won.

But nonetheless, one of the things both Clinton and Obama share is an admiration for Lincoln's governance, and Obama, as we all know these days, has been reaching out to former rivals as possible participants in his upcoming administration to make his programs for change work.

And although Lincoln's time was far different from today's, with his calm demeanor, Obama may just pull it off -- a united bipartisan effort to pull America from the current quandries that it faces.

- "I didn't vote for McCain, because he's white, I'm scared that he's old, might not finish his term & Sarah Palin who's extravagant as imelda marcos, dumb as imelda marcos, think like imelda marcos & talks like imelda marcos will take over!!!"

Lol ... I was dumbfounded by McCain's choice for VP, but even more astonished that Sarah Palin had accepted it. Major decision error from both! Wouldn't be surprised if such blunder caused them the election.

Thank you, too, Ka Tony!

November 16, 2008 5:32 PM  

Blogger reyd said...

Ako lang ba ang Republican dito?
Hehehe.... I believe on what the party stand for and what that old man can do against a young ambitious senator who had accomplished almost nothing during his term as a state senator and his short stay in Washington.
Oh' well, tapos na, and we can only wish Obama the best of luck to perform his duty and act on those promises that he had during his campaign.

And back to Mayor Arsenio Lacson, most have been said in here about how good of a mayor he was. he survived a lot of attempts on his life except that fatal one inside a hotel room before his daily radio show (with a beautiful companion).

Relative din ba ni Mayor Lacson si Ping? :lol:

November 21, 2008 6:14 PM  

Blogger Señor Enrique said...

That's true, Reyd, we can only hope that Obama would be able to pull it off.

As for the mayor, I can only imagine the amount of death threats he had received even before he became mayor. What a courageous man he truly was.

Not sure about Ping being related with Mayor Lacson, but now I wonder if Ping Lacson would be just as great a mayor of Manila.

November 21, 2008 11:56 PM  

Blogger Nicky said...

For the question if Sen. Lacson was related to the mayor. No they are not. Senator was from Cavite and Mayor was from Negros Occidental.

They are also contemporaries with President Macapagal back in UST. That maybe is one of the reason why Mayor Lacson supported Macapagal in 1961. Macapagal finished law in 1936, a year earlier than Lacson. They also shared a liking for boxing, hehe...

I am just nineteen and I did not expect the Philippines to be an envy of Southeast Asia fifty to forty years ago. If the "Arsenic" succeeded the "Incorruptible" way back in 1965, the time where the Philippines is progressing a close next to Japan then, what may have become of the Philippines now? Of course they are now dead to tell what would it have been.

Thanks for bringing Mayor Lacson back into limelight again! Your blog about this man gave our generation a hope that among a pack of rotten tomatoes there is still a fresh tomatoes to be usable. The presidential election campaign is now starting, it may be time t pick the freshest tomato among the rotten, hope that the people will pick the freshest this time.

More power to your blog...

December 29, 2008 2:29 PM  

Anonymous zhil sicat said...

Loved ur blog... I never knew so much about the Great Manila Mayor Arsenio Lacson, until tonight that my father mentioned him to me as part of his numerous stories, my father was a great historian, who was born in 1930, I got interested with Mayor Lacson's whereabouts and finding ur article. It was really very helpful. My father and I were talking about the upcoming election this 2010 on who has to be voted, I certainly couldn't see yet anyone with the same qualities as Mayor Arsenio Lacson who can really fight corruption. I told my Dad that I might not vote a president unless I see that he has the backbone to fight corruption. too idealistic it is but this could be possible.

December 25, 2009 10:30 PM  

Anonymous JoeyAyroso said...

I heard of Mayor Lacson before by my parents. Actually he is agood mayor for Manila during his time. Manila was administered properly and orderly as a mayor. His death was a controversy, he was link to Imelda Marcos at that time being Miss Manila and bared a rumor it was Imee Marcos. It doesn't end to that during his death he was on top of Miss Charito Solis due to excitement his life expired because of Charito. The latter became also Miss Manila and everytime there's somebody became Miss Manila, he baptized. If He became the president of the Philippines our country will be peaceful because everybody will be afraid to him because of being strict and straight as a leader. Even Marcos was challenge to a fist fight but Marcos turns down his challenge. He is really a fighter but also a lover.

December 21, 2011 12:02 PM  

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Life in Manila as observed by a former New Yorker who with a laptop and camera has reinvented himself as a storyteller. Winner of the PHILIPPINE BLOG AWARDS: Best Photo Blog in 2007 and three Best Single Post awards in 2008.


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