Cliffhanger at Ohio

What can be more exciting than this? Florida in 2000, Ohio in 2004.

As of 5:25 EST, Bush is leading by 2 electoral votes over Kerry (254/252) according to CNN’s projections. I’ve been waiting for Ohio to release the final tally. It seems that whoever gets Ohio wins the election.

Sit tight!

Update: 11 am EST. Kerry is not yet conceeding. Bush is 140,000 leading in Ohio. They are still waiting for provisional ballot counting. Now, can anyone tell me what’s a “provisional ballot” is?

US Elections 2004

I’m interestingly monitoring the US Presidential elections on CNN. This US elections amaze me. Really. The reason for the amazement is this: I thought they are different, but not quite. The way they conduct their election and campaign this season is pretty much similar here. For instance:

1. There’s so much negativity in their campaign. I thought the Philippines is unique in this aspect. I thought it’s only us who brands candidates — the brainy and the bopols*. But they do have an “ostrich” Bush who hides his head on the ground, and an “eagle” Kerry, who soars high — that is, according to Democrats, of course. I enjoyed watching that campaign ad.

2. Celebrities do endorse candidates. In here, a celebrity endorsement can make a difference. Ah, they do have this, too! I saw Leonardo Di Caprio, Jon Bon Jovi and other big Hollywood stars joining Kerry’s campaign. This looks real familiar.

3. They also have some digitalized election problems. In here, a few months before the election, the Supreme Court dumped the electronic voting contract for fear of massive electoral fraud. While watching CNN, they featured Florida and Ohio having the same kind of problem. Even worse, I think. In Florida, they’ll be using a touch screen machine to cast vote — without a papar trail. What if they’ll be hit by a hurricane again? The lights go off, and there goes your electronic voting. In Ohio, people are confused on how to do shading for the ballots. The instruction is to connect the arrows. But when they do actual sampling, people either put an “X” or encircle the name. Reminds me of the same opposition we had for our own computerized election.

Well, I’ll be glued to our TV Wednesday morning. I’ll be late for work :) I’m hoping for a Bush win. Not for anything else, but my reason is selfish. Kerry has an anti-outsourcing policy. And we can’t afford that. As an outsourcing company, we live from outsourced US programming jobs.

Let’s wait and see.

Remembering Martial Law

They call us “Martial law babies”. The reason is that we were born during the peak of what is known as the Martial law era.

Today marks the 32nd anniversary of martial law. President Marcos declared the Philippines under martial law on September 21, 1972. Most people accused him of human rights violations. Others thought he made the right decision. Nonetheless, what we are today as a nation was defined by the past.

The martial law era produced people that went arm to arm with Marcos. One of which was Sen. Benigno Aquino, who was later on assasinated on 1983, which was the main reason why there is an EDSA revolution on Feb. 1986. And do you know why there is what they call EDSA 2 and EDSA 3? Because there is that EDSA 1! :) The “People Power syndrome” all started there. Some thinks it’s good, some do not. Well, whatever. We still have billions of peso in budget deficit that made the UP economic professions push the alarm button.

That makes Johann a “fiscal crisis baby”.

Don’t blame us!

President Arroyo’s decision to pull out Filipino troops from the war-torn Iraq is very unpopular within the international community. The latest annoying comment came from our neighboring power house, Australia. They are blaming us, together with Spain, for heeding to the terrorists’ demand of pulling out our troops out of Iraq. After receiving threat of their own from the terrorists, they now started finger-pointing like a child blaming a playmate for causing him to stumble.

Come on, now! Don’t blame us if these terrorists are threatening you, moreso if they succeed in the threat. You have to understand that our president needs to please our people first and foremost then the international community — in that order. The decision to pull out the troops is more than just saving one person’s life — it’s a way of uniting our politically divided nation. And that act was successful in accomplishing the purpose. If it has indeed strengthen the terrorists, then let’s deal with it and solve the problem from there.

So if some bombs explode in your Olympic village, don’t finger point at us! Check your military intelligence. You’re grown ups. Don’t blame the “kids”.