IF the law on campaign spending and political advertising were imposed before the official campaign period began last week, one presidential candidate would have already overspent in the past three months alone, even as he joins four others who would have exceeded the broadcast limit for TV.
HER NEIGHBORS on 200 P. de la Cruz Street remember the 49-year-old Lolita Bergado as a fair, petite, and pretty housewife who loved to watch television. She lived in a one-bedroom house with her husband and their four sons, the oldest 30 and the youngest, 14. They also have a daughter, 19-year-old Marjorie-lue or Joy, who was born with Down’s syndrome. Two daughters-in-law and two grandchildren stay with them as well. Lolita cooked meals and kept house for them all — 11 members of an extended family that somehow managed to cram themselves into a dark and airless concrete shell barely 40 square meters in size.
THE QUEUES in mall bathrooms attest to our national vanity. With all the women putting on lipstick, powdering their noses, and whipping their dangerously long, buhaghag-free hair between vigorous brushstrokes, it is nearly impossible to get to the sink to wash hands. Whether the vanity is cause or effect, I’m not sure. Probably a little of both.
I RECENTLY took a peek at the entertainment section of the country’s most widely circulated broadsheet morning paper, and it was no surprise for me to find no Pilipino movie being shown in any of the movie houses connected with malls and commercial centers in Metro Manila. This was not the first time I’ve had this experience this year. Actually, having no Pinoy film to see in Metro Manila has become quite usual.
THE FUTURE of television is here. At least, its prototype is. Today we use our mobile phones for more than just communicating. We use them to take pictures, play games, share music, and download news and celebrity gossip. More and more, we turn to our phones to kill time when stuck in traffic, while waiting in line, or in the presence of boring company. Nokia, the global leader in wireless telecommunications, has spotted the trend. “Be entertained anywhere” is its new tagline, a radical departure from its roots as a mobile-handset manufacturer.
THE MEDIA have always been a major player in Philippine elections, more so now with the pervasiveness of television. But there is a twist in this year’s elections: the increasing influence of the entertainment media and of showbiz celebrities in the campaign. And that, of course, comes with a price tag.
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