With the election of the new President of the Republic of the Philippines today, 10 May 2010, the administration of President Gloria Macaraeg Macapagal-Arroyo finally comes to an end.  Of course, she becomes Congresswoman of Pampanga even before she steps down as President of the Republic of the Philippines — sort of like stepping down as Miss Philippines and then becoming Miss Balo-balo atpo Burung Dalag [ Miss Fermented Shrimp Rice and Fermented Mudfish Rice — Kapampangan savory staples ] of the Lubao Public Market — but let’s not go into that [ although when she becomes Prime Minister in a proposed parliamentary government she becomes Miss Universe ].  What I’m interested in is if we will eventually reminisce about her administration with nostalgia and longing, the same way many [ but not I 😛 ] are now feeling about the 21-year administration of President Ferdinand Edralin Marcos [ 1965-1986 ]…

The thing is, as an ordinary Filipino citizen with absolutely no business or blood ties to government officialdom, I saw substantial progress during her presidency [ in a way I didn’t see during the Estrada presidency, not a whit ]:  new concrete roads from Luzon, Visayas, to Mindanao;  new infrastructure all over;  and best of all, a good business climate even during the recent Wall Street Crash — “due to the sound economic fundamentals of her administration” according to Vivian Yuchengco — which allowed us entrepreneurs to finally recoup the losses incurred during the Estrada administration which tragically coincided with the Asian Crash of 1997.  Although the long Arroyo presidency was less magical for me than the Ramos presidency, it was OK businesswise [ and that is what matters most!!! ].  I know it is myopic and narrow-minded of me to say so but personally, it wasn’t bad, not bad at all.



  1. Lynna Stumvoll said,

    September 4, 2015 at 7:26 pm

    Will someone please let me know when Ricardo “Bing” Torres (editor of Manila Bulletin and the Times Journal and President of the National Press Club) died?

  2. October 11, 2011 at 10:58 am

    hi! i’m a grandson of philip c. whitaker

  3. Myles Garcia said,

    December 23, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    Enrique wrote:

    Phil C. Whitaker, and the company became known as Whitaker and Ortigas.Phil Whitaker is the grand father of Marge Ansaldo Tambunting & Mary Ann Ansaldo Chan he was considered one of the richest man in the Philippines during his time


    I just came across this thread again…and how interesting to learn about Whitaker going back awhile. The Whitakers lived right across the street from us in San Juan. I was always curious about their origins but I never asked them. Mr. Whitaker (probabaly Jr.) was hardly ever around; Mrs. W (who was a Spanish mestiza) was a little heavy on the bottle–so the children who were a quiet lot…were pretty much on their own. Even the boys and the younger girl went to St. John’s, the oldest girl, Frances, went to Holy Mamow (as it was called then). Like a lot of mestizo families, they were all very fair EXCEPT for one boy whose features were like his brothers…but he was very kayumanggi. I’ve seen this in other families too. Why is that?

    But I digress. Anyway, we lived across the street from each other but hardly had an interaction with each other–except for their howling dog which drove my father nuts!! Anyway…the Ansaldos (who lived one street away, on M. Paterno) were patients of my mom) — so I somewhat knew them. But I never connected that the Ansaldos AND the Philip Whitakers in front of us were kissin’ cousins. What a small world!

    Frances (I think she and Tina Santos might’ve been the FAIREST Filipinas I know about…well, except for that “Ortigas ‘contessa'” kuno relation…who posts from some mysterious Italian island) I believe, married a Zaldarriaga.

  4. June 4, 2010 at 5:27 pm


    Thank you so much for your fantastic contributions to this blog.

    Thank you for your authoritative and interesting insights. But when quoting articles from elsewhere, please do not forget to acknowledge the sources. We want to avoid copyright problems in the future.

    Many thanks and cheers!!!

    Toto Gonzalez 🙂

  5. Enrique Bustos said,

    June 4, 2010 at 3:52 am

    Here is a Story about another close friend of President Manuel Quezon Francisco Ortigas about “Hacienda de Mandaloyon”:

    The 4,033-hectare Hacienda de Mandaloyon originally formed part of the estate holdings of the Augustinian Order.

    On January 20, 1920, the Augustinian Fathers sold this property to Dr. Frank W. Dudley and Don Francisco Ortigas. Dr. Dudley later surrendered his interest to Phil C. Whitaker, and the company became known as Whitaker and Ortigas.Phil Whitaker is the grand father of Marge Ansaldo Tambunting & Mary Ann Ansaldo Chan he was considered one of the richest man in the Philippines during his time

    In the following years, there were several changes of partners. Then, on July 10, 1931, the company was incorporated “Ortigas, Madrigal y cia., S. en C.” as a limited partnership. Its partners include Francisco Ortigas (Don Paco), Vicente Madrigal, B.C.M. Johnston, Fulgencio Borromeo, Clyde A. Dewitt and Manuel L. Quezon. All the incorporators, except Quezon, who was President of the Philippine Senate at that time, were constituted as managing and general partners (socios gerentes colectivos) while the other shareholders were designated limited partners (socios comanditarios).

    The objective of the partnership was to acquire the Hacienda de Mandaloyon, which spanned the municipalities that are now known as Mandaluyong, San Juan, Pasig & Quezon City. The estate was to be disposed of either in large tracts or developed subdivided lots.

    In 1956, Vicente Madrigal withdrew from the partnership and the partnership’s name was correspondingly amended to “Ortigas & Company, Limited Partnership.”

    In 1985, the Ramirez and Lanuza groups of general and limited partners who held 42% of the entire partnership’s equity also withdrew from the partnership.

    When Ortigas & Company took over management of the estate, it was a virtual wasteland. It was the vision of the management team, headed by Atty. Francisco Ortigas, Jr., who was president and chairman at that time that transformed this wasteland into a progressive industrial, commercial, and residential urban complex

    Since the time the Ortigas family bought the estate in 1920, a lot has changed not only as far as how these lands now look like but also as to how the family is viewing its business.

    “Almost everything north of Pasig, west of Marikina, east of San Juan, and south of Diliman was owned by the Ortigas family. And their strategy then was to unload land as fast as possible,”

    Ortigas & Company, a limited partnership and possibly one of the very few partnerships remaining in the country, has to its credit the highly successful Greenhills Shopping Center (GSC), which has been copied but never surpassed, and a number of plush subdivisions in the Ortigas area such as the Greenhills subdivisions, Green Meadows (built in the ‘80s), Wack-Wack, Valle Verde,and the Ortigas Center the central business district among the pioneer and prominent edifice is the Benpres Building (originally known as the Chronicle Building) located at the corner of Tektite Road (later renamed as Exchange Road) and Meralco Road. Surrounding landmarks are the Meralco Building along Ortigas Avenue, The ABM Sison Hospital (later renamed as The Medical City Hospital) which is located at its new site along Ortigas Avenue, Lourdes School of Mandaluyong ( with the Administration Office as the original Parish Church), St. Martin Technical School ( later restructured by the Former First Lady Imelda Marcos to form part of the University of Life Complex.) There is also the EDSA Central Commercial Center and SM Megamall (Corinthian Gardens was developed by the Madrigals who originally were partners while the property where Acropolis now stands was acquired by Sta. Lucia and was originally Green Meadows phase 2. Corinthian Hills meanwhile was developed by the Puyats and was part of the vast Ortigas landholdings).the New Manila area in Quezon City was sold to Dona Magdalena Ysmael Hemady it was also part of Hacienda de Mandaloyon Speaker Jose Zulueta also erswhile governor of Iloilo Bought in the 1950’s from Ortigas & Co a 12-hectare Property that became a gated community that became San Antonio Village named after his son Antonio Vic Zulueta.

    But prior to 2001, the partnership was no longer developing any new real estate activity (the last one was probably Green Meadows) and was just managing GSC from which it was deriving huge revenues in terms of lease rentals.

    In 2001, the partnership virtually woke up from a long hiatus and entered a new phase in its long existence. In 2005, Tiendesitas, a shopping complex located inside the 18.5-hectare Frontera Verde property along the C-5 road in Pasig, began operations. Luntala Valley Verde, a 77-unit residential townhouse development inside Valle Verde 6-A, was born. Circulo Verde, a 12-hectare master-planned development, began.

    “With all these activities, they still have around 60 hectares of prime land, including the one which used to house the Rizal Provincial Capitol but was reverted to the partnership. This does not include around 34 hectares of property inside Camps Crame and Aguinaldo which could revert to them if the military and the police stop using them,”

  6. Enrique Bustos said,

    June 3, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    iba pang “magtetela”/textile merchants Silverio, de la Merced, Ligon.

  7. Enrique Bustos said,

    June 3, 2010 at 5:36 am


    Sila ay “magtetela”/textile merchants sa Divisoria, tama ka sa lahat maliban kay Madame X. Sa aking pag-aakala, ang pinagsimulan ng kanyang yaman ay ang “black market” noong ikalawang mundong digmaan; siya ay naakusahan na “war profiteer” pagkatapos ng digmaan.

    Tungkol naman kay J. Amado “Amading” Araneta, bago pa maging Presidente si Manuel Roxas ay mayamang-mayaman na ang pamilya ng kanyang asawa na si Ester Araneta dahil siya lang ang nag-iisang anak ni Don Jorge Araneta na isa sa pinakamalaking mangangalakal ng asukal sa Pilipinas. Siya ang may ari ng Talisay-Silay Sugar Mills, Ma-ao Sugar Mills, at Bacolod-Murcia Sugar Mills. Si Don Jorge Araneta noong panahon ng Commonwealth ay isa sa mga leading financier at malapit na kaibigan ni Presidente Quezon. Maaga pumanaw si Don Jorge Araneta nung late 1930’s. Nung malaman ito ni Presidente Quezon na nagbabakasyon sa Baguio ay bumaba kaagad siya ng Baguio upang puntahan ang asawa nito para makiramay. President Quezon described Don Jorge Araneta as “one of his dearest friends and one of his most loyal and disinterested supporters”. Sobrang malapit na magkaibigan si Presidente Quezon at si Don Jorge Araneta na isa lang siya sa kaunting tao na puwedeng kumausap kay Presidente Quezon ng walang appointment. Ang kapatid naman ni J. Amado “Amading” Araneta na si Cecilia Araneta ay napangasawa ni Speaker Jose Yulo.

    Sa mga Alajera, ang Pamilya Laperal bago pa mag ikalawang mundong digmaan ay isa na sila sa pinakamalakas na mag dala dito sa Pilipinas ng mga alahas at brilyante na galing pa sa Antwerp, Belgium. Ang mga Oledan ang nabigyan ng break noong panahon ni Presidente Garcia.

    Si Lino Bocalan ang nagpaparating ng mga “blue seal” na sigarilyo sa Cavite. Ang mga Montano ang protektor ni Lino Bocalan.

  8. tomas pablo san andres said,

    May 31, 2010 at 6:02 am


    pagkatapos ng giyera, mga smugglers ba ng tela sina madame x *spinosa, lit*on, s*rangaya, p*cache, l*rag, et. al. todo ang smuggling, sa divisoria ang bagsak.

    si j. amado araneta ng cubao, sa panahon ba ni pangulong manuel roxas siya nagkaroon ng malaking “break” kaya lumaki ang negosyo niya?

    nabasa ko, sa “bootlegging” ang pinagsimulan, tapos dumikit kay manuel roxas.

    at sa panahon ni pangulong carlos p. garcia, yung mga “alajeras” tulad ng lap*ral, ol*dan sumipa ang “buy and sell” nila, nagka-building sa ayala avenue.

    yung blue seal cigarettes smuggling naman sa cavite, mga m*ntano ba yun?

  9. Enrique Bustos said,

    May 26, 2010 at 9:40 am


    Almost all the Presidents of the Philippines had/have cronies:

    President Manuel Quezon ( Toribio Teodoro, Vicente Madrigal, Andres Soriano Sr., Francisco Ortigas Sr. );

    President Elpidio Quirino ( Jose J. de Leon, Eugenio Lopez, Vicente Madrigal );

    President Ramon Magsaysay ( Francisco Ortigas Jr., Guillermo Guevarra, Jose Marcelo );

    President Carlos P. Garcia ( Emerito Ramos, William Chiongbian );

    President Diosdado Macapagal ( Benigno Toda, Antonio Roxas-Chua, Fernando Jacinto, Jesus Cabarrus );

    President Ferdinand Marcos ( Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco Jr., Tony Floirendo, Jose Yao Campos, Roberto Benedicto );

    President Cory Aquino ( Ernie Aboitiz, Ramon del Rosario Jr., Cesar Buenaventura, Jaime Zobel de Ayala, Jose “Joe” Concepcion, Jaime “Jimmy” Ongpin, Eugenio “Geny” Lopez Jr., Jose “Jobo” Fernandez );

    President Fidel Ramos ( Andres Soriano III, Tonyboy Cojuangco, Noel Onate, the so-called foreign investors Amari Group, Renong Berhad Group, Citra Group, Hopewell Group );

    President Gloria Arroyo ( Ricky Razon, Sabin Aboitiz, Lucio Co, Conkoy Tuason, Bomboy Araneta );

    All of them were accused of benefiting from the President of the Philippines during their time. President Estrada was not the only one that had a set of cronies. Ask them, those who are still alive, and they will tell you how good the country was then and how good the President they supported during his incumbency was.

    Nonoy Yulo never supported President Erap. He was, in fact, a witness against President Estrada during his impeachment trial about the BW scandal because he was then President of the Philippine Stock Exchange.

  10. Presy Guevara said,

    May 14, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    “President Anak ng Nanay” will take the helm. “Noy-nay” will be the team. Boy Abunda will keep saying “Now-na.” Those in disbelief will keep saying “‘Nay ko po!” Good Luck, Juan de la Cruz.

  11. Josh Moya said,

    May 13, 2010 at 4:18 pm

    To Sabin Arranz:

    “Makati prospered _in spite of_ him”


  12. Myles Garcia said,

    May 13, 2010 at 6:43 am

    Oh please. Did I say EVERYTHING a President says is just plain semantics? I think you are just being nitpicky.

  13. Sabin Arranz said,

    May 13, 2010 at 2:16 am

    It completely disgusts me that so many people voted for Binay. It’s sheer stupidity and blind adherence to sound bites and the cult of personality. He’s filth.

    Perhaps those who voted for him are fervently hoping that he’ll wave his magic “duwende” wand and turn the whole country into Makati? Nevermind that Makati would have prospered the way it had even without him. In fact, I dare say that Makati prospered _in spite of_ him.

  14. Ipê Nazareno said,

    May 13, 2010 at 12:02 am


    I AM giving him the benefit of the doubt. I did say that I hope he just mis-spoke. Myles, everything a President says is not just plain semantics.

  15. Myles Garcia said,

    May 12, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    Ipe, it’s semantics and splitting hairs. FOR…WITH…me…Filipino people…same thing. U know u just can’t put your words into other people’s mouths. U have to give other people the benefit of the doubt…otherwise you’d just go on correcting everything another person who has the right of choice, says. And what does that really accomplish? Nada.

  16. Ipê Nazareno said,

    May 12, 2010 at 6:59 am


    I’m pretty sure Binay doesn’t want the President to work FOR him. I am just pointing out that no President can ever demand that another elected official work FOR him. All elected officials work for THE FILIPINO PEOPLE.

    The earlier Mr. Aquino realizes this, the better for our country.

    As I said, I sincerely wish that he only mis-spoke. He should have said, “yes I can work WITH whoever the Filipino people voted as Vice-President as we were chosen to work FOR the FILIPINO PEOPLE.” You must admit that there is a big difference in what he said and what he ought to have said.

  17. Myles Garcia said,

    May 11, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    But Ipe, Aquino will be THE BOSS and Binay is NOT his party-mate, so indeed it must be the underling who must coalesce himself to the style and bent of the incoming president…not the other way around.

  18. Ipê Nazareno said,

    May 11, 2010 at 8:03 am

    In his very first Press Conference after the elections which was held this afternoon, our President-Elect was asked by a reporter (referring to the fact that Mayor Binay might be his Vice-President) “Are you willing to work with Mayor Binay?”

    President-Elect Aquino replied, “I think the proper question is whether Mayor Binay is willing to work FOR me.”

    Mr. President-Elect, congratulations on your victory but, with all due respect, before you take your oath, I hope you realize that our elected public officials do not work for the President but for the Filipino People.

    I hope he just mis-spoke and the statement was not a Freudian Slip.

  19. Ipê Nazareno said,

    May 11, 2010 at 7:59 am

    There are many other big stories in the just concluded elections aside from Noynoy’s win. These are:

    1. Binay over Mar Roxas. With 78% of the votes tallied, he leads Mar by over 1 Million Votes (12.205 Million vs. 11.200 Million). This will leave Mar without any government position (his 6-year term as Senator expires this June and he cannot be appointed to any government position until May of next year).

    2. Erap! He is definitely still a force to reckon with. If the 6Million strong Iglesia ni Cristo endorsed Erap, we would not have Noynoy for President.

    3. Fr. Ed Panlilio losing heavily in Pampanga (against Lilia Pineda) and Gov. Grace Padaca trailing Bodjie Dy in Isabela.

    4. The Marcoses are definitely back with: (a) Bongbong Marcos hovering between 6th to 7th place in the Senate race getting almost 40% of the vote nationally eclipsing even the likes of Ralph Recto, Serge Osmeña, Tito Sotto, and Lito Lapid; (b) Imee Marcos winning the Governorship by a landslide over cousin Mike Keon; and (c) the one and only Imelda Marcos returning to Congress.

    5. Pacquiao, contrary to Kris Aquino’s prediction, scored a knock out outside the boxing ring by defeating the long-ruling Chiongbians of Sarangani.

    6. Notwithstanding the long lines (I arrived at my polling precinct at 6:50am, I finished voting at 9:20am), the automation by the COMELEC and Smartmatic was generally quite successful especially the tabulation and transmission of the votes.

  20. Jules B. Vergel de Dios said,

    May 11, 2010 at 5:06 am

    Btw, Larry…
    saw you on “A-List” show
    nice to see you there!


  21. Jules B. Vergel de Dios said,

    May 11, 2010 at 5:03 am

    Alrite gorgeous posters…
    someone already got the Throne…
    [and the sceptre]
    so I will just await for the Wedding Bells to Ring –
    and when?

    …what about partition of the Hacienda?

  22. May 11, 2010 at 12:05 am

    No more snide remarks from me, Garganta. I am satiated with MY DICK. I came, I saw, I voted for the FIRST TIME.

    I am too happy today to reach out to the Bay Area.

  23. Josh Moya said,

    May 10, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    The Arroyo administration is far from magical but i think history will be kinder to her… i believe she will be remembered as a hardworking president who shielded the Philippines from the economic turmoil that was spreading throughout the world.

  24. Alicia Perez said,

    May 10, 2010 at 9:43 am


    I am sure Mario Crespo a.k.a. Mark Jimenez, Lucio Co, Jacinto Ng, Chavit Singson, Dante Tan, Lucio Tan, Ricky Razon, Buboy Virata, Nonoy Yulo, Manny Zamora, and Ronnie Zamora will agree with your glorious assessment of the Estrada administration.


    Alicia Perez

  25. Don Escudero said,

    May 10, 2010 at 7:19 am

    GMA reminds me of a teacher you hated in high school and college, and maybe rightly so, but in hindsight was probably right most of the time.
    The problem is too many of her critics are too manila-centric in their worldview and cannot see how much progress in terms of infrastructure, etc. has benefited the provinces, which are due to her policies. This does not however excuse corruption or other money-making scams along the way.

  26. Dado Gonzalez said,

    May 10, 2010 at 7:05 am

    All I remember of that “administration,” if you can even call it that, is pure unadulterated shit.

    See what they did to the Secretary of Education. He was the best man for the job, EVER. Apart from instituting brilliant, wide-ranging reforms, he also zealously guarded the department’s budget, regarding it as a sacred trust from God and the Filipino people. But because Pit Bull and Drag Queen in the Senate were not getting their accustomed 30 % percent of all the contracts of the education department’s immense budget [ whatthefuck? ], their minions went to work to destroy him. SUVs? Those SUVs were imported by a Chink Palace associate and foisted on all the government departments as part of a bigger deal. All the disgruntled wheeler dealers then hung the poor education secretary upside-down. And what did the president do? Nothing. He was inebriated and fornicated as usual.

  27. Enrique Bustos said,

    May 10, 2010 at 6:35 am

    President Joseph Estrada also had some major achievements during his term i remember when he became President the exchange rate of the Dollar to the Peso was $1 to P45 it became $1 to $38 during his term then came the Jueteng controversy which led to the downward spiral of the Peso to the Dollar, today the exchange rate of the dollar is about P45 to a dollar back to post Asian Crash of 1997 also during President Estrada’s term the Philippines had a surplus in rice production and was able to export rice again after two decades President Estrada was able to get back 46 rebel camps of the MILF. he gave the needed incentives to Megaworld corp to develop the Eastwood Complex in Libis Quezon City for its planned call center development that paved the way for others to develop their own call center ventures today our call center industry created jobs to 100,000 Filipinos our country now earns $9 billion dollars a year and now is in second place in the global business processing outsourcing industry if you compare it with the income of our 10 million OFW who sends about $18 billion dollars a year their is big disparity, he also secured the funding of the Subic Clark Tarlac Expressway from the Obuchi Fund of the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) from then Japanese Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi It was during the term of President Joseph Estrada that the Subic-Clark Alliance was conceptualized and the funding for the Subic Container Port, along with five other projects secured from the Obuchi Fund

    During his term he inherited an economy that was hit hard by the Asian Crisis he was able to make our economy move again the rate of GNP in 1999 increased to 3.6 percent from 0.1 percent in 1998, and the GDP posted a 4.0 percent growth rate, up from a low of -0.5 percent in 1998 Debt reached P2.1 trillion in 1999. The inflation rate came down from 11 percent in January 1999 to just a little over 3 percent by November of the same year. This was in part due to the agricultural program Agrikulturang Maka Masa, through which it achieved an output growth of 6 percent, a record high at the time

  28. Sabin Arranz said,

    May 10, 2010 at 1:10 am

    It would be interesting to see just how sound those “sound economic fundamentals” would have been were it not for the billions of dollars constantly flowing into the country thanks to the Philippines’ #1 export: OFWs…

    Ok, call me a cynic. 🙂

  29. Myles Garcia said,

    May 10, 2010 at 12:15 am

    Although I never actually lived under GMA’s administration, I think if Gloria had been a more glamorous attractive lady (like the very superficial, ditzy IRM) plus all her accomplishments, I think she would’ve commanded a lot more respect. Filipinos, more than any other nationality, are so taken by a book’s cover that they tend to forget the whole package and the bigger picture. That’s poor Gloria’s tragedy. She was a lady of accomplishments but the nation which voted her in anyway, belittled her afterwards, and seems to me to be a bunch of ingrates. (Your cue, Larry, for something snide…) 😉

  30. Dr. Taddy Buyson Gonzales said,

    May 9, 2010 at 10:45 pm

    Madame Arroyo was a working president and she worked well.

    She is said to be the most unpopular president but the public did not completely buy that, otherwise she would have been booted out like what happened to Marcos and Estrada.

    It is the media which should be reformed for the good of our country.

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