Mercifully, the political circus will be over in five days. But will it really?
The traditional "wisdom" in Philippine political campaigns is that a candidate, especially for hotly contested posts, will have to overcome two major hurdles before he/she can claim a win: the voting and the counting. “A candidate may win in the voting, but will he win in the counting?” is a common question asked by voters. The vote tally is the bigger hurdle, thus political operatives know that a big chunk (some say 98 percent) of campaign funds should be saved for the last night before election, when the horse-trading and the bribing will be at fever-pitch and poll watchers are deployed (and paid) in every precinct to make sure the votes are counted correctly.
Who wins and who loses when the electoral process is subverted? Walden Bello, a recognized thought leader and independent senatorial candidate, shares his opinion piece on who or what is the biggest current threat to the Philippines' teetering democracy.
Moving on to other compelling stories, Positively Filipino Contributing Writer Rey E. de la Cruz takes us to his hometown of Ballesteros, Cagayan where the destructive effects of black sand mining has resulted in an eroded coastline and the wiping out of "gakka," small clams unique to the area. Gakka has been a traditional Cagayan delicacy for centuries and its disappearance has made Ballesteros natives angry at those profiting from the mining activities.
And another hometown, another lament: Rene Astudillo returns to Baguio and realizes that the hometown he knew is now just a memory. "What Happened to the Baguio I Once Knew?" is a common question from those who once loved the beautiful city of pines.
In Manila, Kashmir restaurant, the first and longest-running Indian restaurant in the metro area, continues to lord it over newbies. Serina Aidasani pays tribute to the restaurant's longevity in "Spicing Up the Filipino Palate," some 40 years after the owners introduced Indian cuisine to Filipino taste buds.
Kashmir also shares with us its recipe for Vegetarian Samosas in our Happy Home Cook section this week.