Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Mea culpa?

For her opponents its too early to rejoice. Fortunately, I was not able to see GMA's mea culpa speach last night. I was having dinner with friends at Rodics, my day was not ruined. Eventually, I had to view the little sorry speech this morning and read the transcript of her speech. A few significant points were made amidst the I am sorry mantra. One, she apologised for talking to a comelec official after the May 2004 elections. Two, she stressed that she won the divisive presidential election. Three, she took office with a mandate to pursue crucial reforms for the country. Simply said: she apologised for talking to a comelec official after the May elections and she will not resign. Is she a lame duck or dead meat as some pundits and opponents say. Despite the obvious schadenfreude and blood thirst, of her critics, only time will tell. Estrada fell because he abandoned his Presidency. A few months later Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez faced the same dilema but did not leave office despite the protests and rallues. Chavez is still the president of Venezuela. You have to impeach her first. And in order to impeach GMA you have to file the case in Congress where she has the numbers. And now that she admits that she talked with a comelec official, the tapes may be inadmissable as evidence. Remember you need admissible proof to impeach someone. And those seeking to oust Arroyo by legal means need proof. Assuming that the opposition is succesful in making progress in an impeachment case and they have her impeached. She will be replaced by the VP Noli De Castro, who is not one with the oppostion but with the LP - Franklin Drilon and friends. I do not think they are in the mood to prepare and cook their meal for somebody else. Maybe that is why some opposition leaders are asking for a snap election and Loren Legarda is willing to spend for her electoral protest. Then there is of course the People Power route. Demonstrations and civil disobedience in order to pressure GMA to resign. This involves marching in the street with more than the usual coterie of leftists and Erap loyalists. In other words you have to get the middle class of Metro Manila. I doubt you can do this given the fatigue, caused disenchantment and betrayal from the political promises of Edsa I, II, and III, of the people. Aside from that you have to contend with the rainy season. And you have to have rallying point an assasination a cover up by the senate, so far what they have is wiretapped conversation that is on the basic level improper but not criminal. Then of course the degree of guilt or non-guilt will depend on what side of the political fence you are sitting. And probably more importantly it has been consistently said and unfortunately critically ignored by most Manila-based intellectuals and activists is that Metro Manila maybe where the seat of government is but it is not the whole of the Philippines. Against the issue of electoral scandal, corruption and political injustice is the trump card called the promise of stability. Which weighs more heavily on a country plagued by non-ending political problems outrage or the desire for stability?


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