TRUTH, no matter how it hurts, is fine. A lie, no matter how embellished with fine words, in due time, hurts.

Now we hear a barrage of pro poor, pro God (no blasphemy here?) and pro country quips from the candidates for national and local positions for the May 10 elections.

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Puro masa, puro para sa bayan. Now, now, let us not be lulled into believing the slogans and witty statements of the candidates. After their victory in the polls, we will be, as always, left with the proverbial empty bag full of empty promises. Then we belatedly realize we've been had.

As always, we will find it very difficult and demeaning to call on the elected officials: we have to pass through a gauntlet of bodyguards, fully armed and tough-looking. No, they would gruffly say: the mayor cannot be disturbed, or he is not available, etc. or the congressman is out of the country or in a meeting.

We are now being wooed no end but after getting our votes, we will be once again treated as dispensable gadgets or worse, as garbage. Never should we be convinced by those pro poor lines coated in sweet talk and promises.

At least, this May, let us be stingy, very discreet and judicious in giving our votes and only to very deserving candidates. Yes, let us do away with overstaying ones, the traditional politicians who have had their stay for so long in their elective offices. And now they want more time in their seats.

Muster courage, ladies and gentlemen, to say no to these overstaying, burned-out reelectionists. 

Let us focus our choice on new deserving candidates whom to install into public office: people who can serve us best and not the other way around. It is our turn now to punish the erring officials for their 'sins' against the people.

Let us vote only for candidates who have been consistent in dispensing genuine, real and effective service and thrash those overstaying officials who, whether or not they admit it, have enriched themselves in office and have, together with their cabal of favorites, treated the public coffers as their own kaha de yero!

Those patronizing lines, those obtrusive and intrusive lines and quotes should now be disregarded. 

Let us consider getting change for the better. Change we can.

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Show-offs on showboats. And so it came to pass that glittering but noisy miting de avance were done on the first day of the official campaign period last March 26, a Friday. Opposing camps had fancy sound systems, fireworks and hordes of listeners probably picked up from various places and some, reports say, were hakot in order to give the impression that the candidates have a massive show of force and support. But no, these people were reportedly 'imported' from other areas and are professional hangers-on similar in style with the crying ladies paid for in wakes in order to impress sympathizers that the deceased is well-loved and respected.

Anything goes in miting de avance: one candidate shouts invectives at his opponent, another shout that the incumbent never did something good for the municipality and its inhabitants. More mudsling and black propaganda will emerge as the campaign shifts to high gear. Let us all watch the show, for whatever it is worth.

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For Christians around the world, today is Holy Monday and it should be treated as that holy meditation and reflection and not a time for merriment or bacchanalian activities. The Pasyon should be read with reverence and tempered solemn tunes and not through modern pop melodies. It is after all a remembrance of the life, sacrifices and sufferings for mankind of one well respected man, Jesus Christ.