Sunday, November 22, 2009

Pacman Mania!

(Photos by Jay Fermin Frontliners Media Group)

Balitang Kutsero By Perry Diaz

Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao’s victory over Miguel Cotto for the world welterweight title made him a national hero and an international sensation. And “Pacman Mania” struck Pinoys worldwide. Pacman! Pacman! Pacman!

During an interview with Pacman, American actor and TV talk show host Mario Lopez told him that he is the greatest Asian to invade the west since Genghis Khan. Pacman grinned.

Lopez then asked Pacman whom would he like to play Pacman in a movie. “Filipino or American?” asked Pacman. Lopez replied, “Either one.” Pacman paused and then said, “I’ll play me,” and then laughed. Hey, Pacman is smarter than what most people think. He’s multi-talented. He’s a boxer, singer, actor, basketball player, and politician. And he’s multi-lingual too. He can speak Visayan, Tagalog and English… all in one sentence! It’s called “Vistaglish.”

Unknown to many, Manny has acted in 10 movies already, not to mention his television comedy show, “Where is Da Manny.” His latest movie, “Wapakman,” will be released in December. Sounds like “Wah Pacman,” huh? The producers are promoting the film as “Ghostbusters, Spider-Man, Desperado, Superman, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, The Cider House Rules, every Jackie Chan movie ever, Rocky III and V (but not IV), Clash of the Titans, Gladiator, and Leonard, Part 6 all rolled into one.” Wow! They should have called it, “Wow Pacman.”

But government censors might ban the film from being shown in the Metro Manila Film Festival because Manny is planning to run for political office. The law forbids candidates from appearing in movies. Now, that’s a stupid law. There are clowns and actors on television who are running for office and their shows are still being shown on television.

Presidential wannabe Gilbert “Gibo” Teodoro picked showbiz celebrity Edu Manzano for his vice presidential running mate. With Gibo’s 2% rating in the polls, he needs Edu to boost his ratings. Well, it doesn’t work that way all time. Sometimes the presidential candidate loses and his running mate wins. Perhaps, they should switch places, Edu for prez and Gibo for veep. That might work better.

Prez Gloria Arroyo seems like she’s beginning to see the handwriting on the wall -- Lakas-Kampi-CMD (LKC) is sinking… fast. Not wanting to go down with the ship, she stepped down as party chairman and turned the job over to Gibo. Poor Gibo, he might not just lose the presidential election, he might sink with the ship too.

Gloria’s resignation as LKC chairman activated the “panic button” causing members to jump ship. An LKC party leader said that 30-40 percent of the members have become “balimbings” (turncoats) and joined either the Liberal Party (LP) or Nacionalista Party (NP). However, my investigative reporter James Macaquecquec heard from a reliable source that many of those who are still with LKC have made secret pacts with either LP or NP. These are the dangerous kind of “balimbing.” But the most dangerous are those who made secret pacts with both LP and NP. They’re called “double balimbing.”

Some of the high-profile “balimbings” are Ralph Recto and his wife Gov. Vilma Santos-Recto who left LKC to join LP. Vilma said, “It’s no bandwagon move.” Yep, it’s not. It’s called “tailgating.”

But there are some LP members who didn’t like the Rectos, so they left LP and are now “butterflying,” that is, flying from one party to another looking for the one to join. I call them “paro-paro” (butterfly). Yep, this is “paro-paro politics,” the game that traditional politicians (trapos) play.

A few days ago, presidential wannabe Manny Villar selected Loren Legarda to be his vice presidential running mate. Finally, after “butterflying” around with five presidential wannabes, Loren finally settled for Villar, the richest of the presidential candidates. Maybe she should change her campaign song from “Loren Loren sinta” (Loren Loren my love) to “Paro-parong bukid” (Butterfly in the field).

Now that Loren has teamed up with Villar after Chiz Escudero bolted the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC), NPC found itself with no candidates for prez and veep. What’s Danding Cojuangco going to do now?

LP’s standard bearer Noynoy Aquino and LKC’s standard bearer Gibo Teodoro are Danding’s nephews. Recent polls were favorable to Noynoy who has 44% rating to Gibo’s 2%. If Danding would support Gibo, I would be very suspicious. And if Danding would support Noynoy… I wonder if that would help Noynoy in the election. A lot of Noynoy’s supporters were veterans of the People Power revolution in 1986 that toppled Ferdinand Marcos. They will not forget that Danding was Marcos’ closest crony.

A news report says that Gibo said that he has two options after the 2010 elections: the presidency or retirement from politics. Well, I think his two options are: retire BEFORE or AFTER the 2010 elections. Since he has only a 2% rating in the polls, BEFORE is better than AFTER. That would save him at least P3 billion and that’s a lot of moolah!

Incidentally, Marcos’ son Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. announced that he accepted the offer of former president and presidential wannabe Joseph “Erap” Estrada to be a “guest candidate” in the senatorial slate of Erap’s Puwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP). He is also a “guest candidate” in the senatorial slate of Danding’s NPC. Then Bongbong insinuated that he may also run as “official candidate” of Manny Villar’s NP.

But recently, in a press conference, Bongbong announced that he’d be willing to run under LP if Noynoy invited him to join. He said that he’s just waiting for Noynoy’s phone call. That’s “double double butterflying.”

Meanwhile, cousins Noynoy and Gibo signed a pact for an orderly, honest, and clean elections. Last August the other presidential and vice presidential wannabes signed a similar agreement. Now, let me guess… whoever breaks the pact would win. Gloria won in 2004, didn’t she? Remember the “Hello Garci” election cheating scandal during the 2004 presidential elections? As someone once said, “In Philippine elections there are no losers, only the winners and those who were cheated.”

“Lakas-Kampi opens door for Pacquiao,” says news report. It looks like “Pacman Mania” is going to catapult Pacquiao into the world of “politicomedy” where anything goes and anybody can run for office. If Erap Estrada and Edu Manzano can run, why can’t Manny Pacquiao run? They all have the same size of brain, right? However, the difference is that Pacquiao can think faster than punch while Erap and Edu can talk faster than think.