Philippine politics: All in the family
By Joe Rivera
Sometime ago, an article in The Economist posed an interesting query that is so relevant to the politics of our times: “Is politics in the blood, or in the genes?”
Every country in the world has its share of political dynasties, but political families in the Philippines are an anomaly in this age of meritocracy. Instead of a system that gives opportunities and advantages to people on the basis of their ability and achievement, the ascendancy of political families in the Philippines is purely motivated by blood relations and the instinct for self-preservation once they have secured elective offices. Elective positions in government have found their way into the family’s gene pool, as if children of elected politicians have the putative right of succession.