Marcos’ Non-Heroes Burial in the Non-Heroes, Heroes Cemetery

Imagine the irony.  The SC allowing the administration to interr a non-hero in a real estate  referred to be a heroes memorial despite affirming the fact that the non-hero has had (still have) ill-gotten wealth and the government still maintaining a PCGG dedicated to recover the same, and its congress having passed a law compensating the non-heroes’ victims.  And let’s not even touch on the fake war exploits.

The flash burial last Friday was a scandal in the sense that it had to be done in a flash, a replica (or fake) body had to be in the Laoag, a coffin so small, and the antis never had the chance to at least disrupt it.

If I were to draw something positive in these events is the fact that the discussion on history, particularly marcos’ misdeeds and the mistakes committed post marcos, have become everyday topics again.  For a long while, this has become an issue confined to martial law babies and its victims.  The younger generation have distanced themselves from this and worse, have become apathetic.

Hopefully, in the future, whoever gets to sit in Malacanang (whether another Marcos or another Aquino or any other surname) will have been elected by a much more wiser and more informed electorate.

 

Du30: Political Bully or Just Plain Cocky?

Du30, in a private party of supporters, warned the senate and congress not to investigate his executive decisions when it comes to crime fighting.

I could almost hear the moderates mutter; “did he just say that?”

Actually, it was me who said it.

Not even during the height of Marcos’ rule did you hear those words.  And at that time, we had a real dictator running the country on an extended stay!

So what gives?  Is Du30 a political bully or just plain cocky.

Being a bully involves guts. The bully banks on his physical size or the size of his followers to cajole the victim to do his own bidding.  He doesn’t care what others think just so he gets his way and he gets to humiliate a lowly midget just for kicks, literally and figuratively.

A political bully is more complex.  Yes, it involves guts and also banks on the size of his following.  But the difference is that, he knows (or has to know) the implications of his bullying tactics.

He knows that in doing so, he might turn off some of his followers.  But then again, with the mandate he got in the last elections, there will still be a lot left.  Not counting the political minions who follow him like he is the Pied Piper of Hamelin.  And if you happen to surf through twitter and Facebook, a lot of his followers, or at least the animated ones, are acting out as bullies themselves.  As an aside, I call them fanatics and not driven by the cause of change but rather by the cult of change.

As a political bully, he knows that in doing so, he might just help the cause of those who oppose him and will encourage others to join in.  Case in point: de Lima (de doce-12), Lacson and Hontiveros.  And this in turn will put his real followers in a politically incorrect position; Cayetano, Pimentel et al.

Both implications do not bode well for his coming administration. And that means, bad for us too, the citizens and especially more so those in the “laylayan ng ating lipunan” borrowing a quote from the coming VP.

However, I would like to think that this bullying has a far more deeper purpose.  And that is for him to push the envelope of his mandate and authority.  To see how far he can go and to see who follows him to the end.

Take for example his bold declaration that he will stamp out criminality in three to six months.  Any level-headed individual even with just a hint of logical thinking knows this is just plain impossible.  But what’s definite is that there will be drastic changes in the bureaucracy, just enough to see a mountain of difference from the current quagmire.

In management, (I run a small company so I can claim to have some idea on this theory, emphasis on “some”.) sometimes you have to push overly hard with the objective not of getting things perfect but to get a leap of change from your people never mind that you fall short of perfection.

By and large, after pushing the envelope, he might get everyone to work for him to achieve his goal but at the same time, he can get the opposition to work even harder to put some of his people in check.

This is important.

In  a political setting, a politician finds it hard to rebuff his people.  For the reason that he might lose some political clout especially if the subject has his own huge following.  this is especially true in local government politics which Du30 has had extensive experience.  And  in a national setting, this gets magnified several times over.

But if the subject gets rebuffed by someone other than him personally (say the opposition), either forcefully or publicly, the politician gets the privilege of not having to do it himself thereby not losing the political clout he would otherwise lose had he done it himself.

Initially, I thought that this guy is a looney for declaring those things this early.  But thinking about it (or at least rationalising it), this might just be something that can be plausible.  And doing it this early when he has yet to occupy Malacanang (well that’s another story–whether he will be IN Malacanang or Davao) means he will hit the ground running, politically, that is, come June 30.

Now, is Du30 cocky?  I guess I have said as much to prove that indeed he is!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BBM: We Wuz Robbed!

Call me biased but BBM appearing on television saying that he got cheated in the VP count is kinda chalk and cheese for me.

The most part of my growing up years I only knew one president, FM Sr.  FM Sr. was the ultimate macho politico.  You never see him mad nor scared.  Not even at the height of EDSA 1 and even when his debilitating disease was getting the better of him.

When he took his oath of office while EDSA was ongoing, all the rest had anxious demeanors, even BBM had a look of a kid about to be heartbroken (in military garb).  But not FM Sr.!

Fast forward 2016, BBM seem to be screaming “we wuz robbed!” I’m tempted to say, “how is it to be on the other side of the fence?”.  But that’s admitting that he was indeed cheated.  Maybe he was but then again, maybe he’s just paranoid.  But one thing is definite, the suit doesn’t fit him well.  Or maybe, “The Boy Who Cried Wolf” would fit him better.

It’s pathetic as it is comical.

Binay: Smooth Operator

In the past months it’s been Mar vs Du30, Mar vs. Poe, Miriam vs. Everyone Else.  While they’ve been fencing, Binay has been groveling.  Hey, Trillanes may be the only one poking a stick on Binay.  But to whom is he not?

Result?  Binay has shot back up while Poe hits a moderate slide.  Du30 seemed to have hit a ceiling and has bounced down a bit.  Mar?  Oh well, he’s been consistent, let’s put it at that.  His ranking has depended on who slides or who shoots up, but numbers-wise—-consistent.

We’ve reached a point in the presidential campaign when platforms and programs are starting to matter.  Poe has been busy with her citizenship issues, not programs.  Mar has been busy with Du30 and vice versa.  And Du30 has also been cursing and mentioning human appendages while at it.  Miriam on the other hand, well, she’s been Miriam:  nose up but everything is still down.  All the while Binay has been busy with his programs which, in a nutshell, is tantamount to a fire sale of anything and everything.  And in the absence of any credible counter argument from any other presidentiable, the people have held on to his (Binay’s) promises as something credible.

It’s like 2013 part two.  Everyone else fights, while Binay crawls from underneath, consolidating his local machinery.  In the end, it’s not just about issues and mudslinging, hey, not even platforms and programs, it’s about ones soldiers in the battlefield being able to deliver the prize!  And with that, the Smooth Operator—Binay, may just have the V in his VP omitted!

 

From Pnoy’s Daang Matuwid to Du30’s PI Leadership

PI!  We first heard it from Mar.  Now we’re getting a confetti from Du30.  Hey, even the Pope was not spared.

Girlfriends?  Erap got them mansions.  Du30 got them boarding houses and an occasional tryist in motels.  Boracay mansion scandal?  We may have the SoGo scandal.  SO clean, So GOod—SOGO.

Credit goes to Du30’s ex-wife.  She “cut and cut clean” (borrowing Laxalt’s advice to Marcos in ’86).  Loi on the other hand, clung and clung clean!

Du30 is clearly the dark horse in the race to the presidency.  He’s our Donald Trump.  But this early, I am in the opinion that he seems running his campaign in a manner that he’s out just to crash and rabble-rouse the party without a clear intention to win it.

Much like what Manoling Morato did in ’98 when he exposed everyone’s skeletons.

In the end, Cayetano may just be spending the entirety of his campaign explaining for Du30’s unorthodox views.  Cayetano the helpmate instead of Cayetano the runningmate.

Now, is the electorate the better for it?  I think not.  Du30 should present his other abilities that go beyond crime fighting.

Davao has a good investor relations program that can be adopted or institutionalized nationwide for other LGUs to adopt.  They have a very efficient and modern emergency response network that is LGU-run which the other LGUs can emulate.  These programs extend beyond crime-fighting but are also of equal importance.

If Du30 can do those then this presidential run of his would get a legitimacy that it needs.  Then the electorate will be the better for it.

Du30: Will He Du it?

As of the latest news, it looks like Du30 might just run as president via the route of substitution.

So, how does a Du30 scenario affect the current crop of presidentiables?  In the previous surveys, Du30 has a huge following in Mindanao, as expected.  In fact, there were two surveys done one after another which showed the increase of Du30’s stock primarily because of the Mindanao vote.  In the same vein, it was then that Binay slid down due to his shedding of his Mindanao support which went to Du30.  That was when Poe surpassed Binay (or at least statistically tied Binay).

Du30 also has a Visayan following and a little in Luzon.  So this only means that should a Du30 candidacy (if and when) become a fruition, the most affected will be Binay (due to the Mindanao exodus) and Roxas (due to the Visayan division).  Poe will be the least affected since most of her support comes from Luzon and some in the Visayas.  Her Mindanao support stems from the FPJ factor which are rather hard core and will only be least affected by a Du30 candidacy.

Let it be known that what I am stating are all recalled from memory.  I might have missed some statistical points here and there.  But at best, mine can be considered a good guesstimate.

BBM was right in saying that with the entry of Du30 (again, if and when), all the latest survey results will have become irrelevant.

But how will Du30 figure in the long run will depend on how he evolves from being a one-dimensional candidate to a multi-faceted politician who is able to address other issues as job generation, fiscal management, foreign relations etc.  (I wrote about this in one of my previous posts.)

But the bigger question is, will he finally Du it?

 

 

 

 

 

Daan Matuwid and Politics: Oil and Water

To be strict the to the ideals of the so called Daang Matuwid (DM) is to abjure any and all indications of politics.  Politics in its essence is the art of compromise or quite simply, horse-trading, my due apologies to the horse species.

The practical side of Daang Matuwid i.e. to gather as much political support in time for elections, is prone to the fact of politics. How much this ideal is watered down depends on the players in the political arena.

Already, we have been hearing of local political developments in the countryside that tend to make the “daan” crooked than what it ought to be intended.  Due to the practical realities of elections, the LP (self-acclaimed vanguards of the DM) has alienated LP originals due to the gravitation of non-LP members to the LP coalition.  Call them turncoats if you will, but in reality, who isn’t?

How the LP handles these turncoats (both inside and out) would test their true adherence to their DM advocacy.  Or maybe the DM is just a punchline and the certainty of electoral victory, whatever the cost, may just be the true advocacy.

For the true believers of DM, how can one justify the selection by the LP of certain groups to be their official candidates who were once on the other side of the fence in the past elections?  This at the expense of the LP originals who fought and lost the electoral wars of the recent past elections!

Equity of the incumbent is the new mantra for this kind of political accommodation. How can it be that GMA, the claimed epitome of what DM is not, is not even given a challenge by any DM advocate?  Conversely, how can a Grace Padaca be left out in the political game where her staunch political opponent has been chosen by the LP as their official candidate?  This has been the situation in other provinces and cities.

Yes, political accommodations are essential in ensuring a political victory in the arena where victory matters most, the presidency.  But isn’t that what the “Strong Republic” slogan of GMA was practicing?  Same with “Erap para sa Mahirap”?  So i guess the question is, up to what extent shall DM be watered down by politics-as-usual for it to be still distinguishable from previous slogans of past administrations?

The proof of the pudding is in the eating.  Come May 9, 2016, we shall get to see and taste this DM of a pudding, that is if it’s still palatable by then.

Poe’s Oath of Allegiance

“I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.”

Poe: The Filipino American President

First lets set aside all the legalities.  Poe is a natural-born Filipino, that’s a fact.  It would be impossible for her biological mother to have given birth to her outside the Philippines then travel to the Philippines, Iloilo of all places, and leave her at the Jaro Cathedral.

As to whether she renounced her Filipino citizenship when she became a US citizen and whether that has cancelled her natural born Filipino status is something for the legal luminaries to debate upon.

A bigger issue looming for Poe is the fact that once upon a time, she pledged allegiance to a foreign country.  For one to be a leader of a nation, ones patriotism should be unquestionable.  Having pledged loyalty to a country different from the one she wishes to serve can put into question his loyalty to his constituents.  In other countries, it can be an issue of national security.  Aggravating it is the fact that all members of her family, if true, are all US citizens.

Having been colonised by the US for a good part of the 20th century, we may think that it’s not that bad at all.  However, what if the citizenship of her family members were China, for example.  Wouldn’t that pose a precarious situation for the nation in light of our territorial dispute in the West Philippine Sea?  Wouldn’t she be questioned on her fitness to decide on these matters?

She has so far dodged questions of loyalty and patriotism so far.  The focus has so far been on her citizenship.  But if and when she is deemed to be qualified, at least on the issue of citizenship, i feel that the above mentioned issues will be at front and center.  How she will respond will define her resolve and integrity more than the issue of her mental  and emotional competence to be president.