The Greatest Show On Earth

Philippine politics is crazy. Crazy, crazy, crazy. I’m trying to come up with a summary of recent events in Philippine politics, and the unfolding plot and cast of characters sounds like a bad, drawn-out telenovela. I don’t know where to begin.

Okay, another movie star, FPJ, runs for president. He’s a close friend of the last movie star who became president: Erap, who was suspected of massive corruption four years ago, went through an impeachment trial lopsided in his favor, and was subsequently ousted in a dramatic extraconstitutional revolt. Now, FPJ takes another showbiz personality for his running mate: TV broadcaster Loren, one of the most vocal advocates against Erap’s continued presidency during the impeachment trial. Incensed by this, Miriam, one of FPJ’s supposed political allies and a fiery-but-unstable senator who stubbornly supported Erap, jumps parties, joining forces with Gloria and her K-4 squad. Such a move would have been unthinkable just over three years ago, when Miriam helped stoke the flames of the violent, abortive “Edsa 3” riot against Gloria. Now, with the old issue of FPJ’s nationality being called into question, his backers are ready to throw his wife, Susan, into the fray, simply on the basis of her immense silver-screen superstar popularity.

It’s just so bizarre. The story never gets so weird that it can’t get any weirder, nor does it ever get so bad that it can’t get worse. I’m still on the edge of my seat, wondering what happens next.

Update: Apparently it was a really bad joke.