Marcos and Arroyo

"[...] In his long years as a professional politician, Marcos had gained an insight into the general predisposition of Filipinos—that they did not care enough about liberty to risk their lives defending it. For him, civil liberties and political rights had become so meaningless to most Filipinos because of their poverty that they would exchange them anytime for the promise of food and jobs. That many people went underground to fight his regime shows that he was wrong, but the fact that he lasted more than 13 years as a dictator suggests that he wasn’t entirely wrong. Had Marcos succeeded in turning the Philippine economy around and improving the economic situation of the average Filipino, it would have been impossible to overthrow him.

"Though the circumstances are not the same, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo finds herself today in an analogous situation. Because of the legitimacy problem that has hounded her since she assumed the presidency in 2001, she has had to fight every inch of the way just to survive. But every action she takes to protect her position only impels her toward an indefinite extension of her powers." Read more from the PDI's Randy David.

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