COMMENTARY

Duterte – The revenge of the masa!

11

The next President must excel in different disciplines. First off he must be a visionary – with a strategic view of the total development of the nation.

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Only he can be the architect of the grand design of development. That said, he would need inputs from a competent team with expertise in every aspect of development.

This means that he must be a good judge of character and competence. He must be a good coach who can maximize the contribution of each number of the team and get them to work together so that they can pull in the same direction.

Since he has to work with the other branches of government like the Congress and the judiciary he must be a unifying force and a super salesman who can market his program of government and solicit the support of other branches and instrumentalities of government.

Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal could not have produced its full employment program and get the US economy back on its feet after the Great Depression, had he not convinced the American people to back up his program.

Thanks to our hybrid-mongrel democracy that resembles neither the Western parliamentary model nor the presidential model of the United States. In the absence of a two-party system, our multiple-party system has only produced a visionless, boom and bust economic cycle, etc. No wonder there is clamor for a strongman, whom the new constitution tried very hard to avoid. The Magsaysay and Duterte phenomena are a symptom of this quest for a messianic strongman, the likes of Hitler, Mussolini, Castro and other “caudillos” of history.

From the debates we only hear of one-liner solutions to complex problems, e.g., focus on agriculture, reduce taxes, etc. To the cognoscenti it takes more than reduced taxes to correct a regressive tax system or a flawed budgetary process to improve levels of incomes, productivity and employment and bailout the agricultural sector, plagued by systemic problems that require holistic solutions.

In other countries, political parties with their specific ideologies present complete programs of governance to solve these systemic problems. Here we rely on the magic wand of the political messiahs riding on popularity, backed up by the logistics of vested interests who eventually get reimbursed through regulatory capture by the politically entrenched economic elite and crony capitalists.

As the song goes – when will we ever learn? Can the millennials, with the use of social media connectivity, help?

Meanwhile, with Duterte steadily holding on to the top berth in the opinion surveys, the masa – if critics of surveys are wrong about these being calculated to produce manufactured results – must be supporting him.

If he becomes President, he would be the revenge of the masa who are hoping that, as he has proclaimed and vowed to do, he would kill all the criminals, and among these are the thieves of public money that should be used to reduce the hunger and poverty of the 26 million Filipinos who are poor.

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11 Comments

  1. Davao is not crime free, and not all people in Davao City love Duterte. Police records are clear that Davao is at the top five in terms of crime crate all over the country: the number of homicide cases in the city totaled 245 from 2010 to 2015. The number of rape incidents in the same period hit 843, while murder incidents reached 1,302. Worse, the crime solution efficiency rate based on police records is way below 50%. Twenty two years in power in Davao City, yes 22 very, very long years, and that’s all he could show for it? What a waste of government funds, personnel, logistics support, etc. Oh, and by the way, include in the list of murder incidents 3 radio commentators whose “crime” was to exercise their freedom of speech by being critical of the Mayor’s handling of city affairs, particularly financial affairs. After they died violently, no one in Davao dared to express ideas that would offend the Mayor or else…. The kind of peace that we have in Davao is the kind that is borne out of fear akin to the kind of peace that one finds in the graveyard.

    • adrian cahaponon maravillas on

      I really agree to Paolo’s comment. If Duterte wins, his presidency will be doomed to failure. With his actions, humanity will be offended and he will be cursed. To be an effective leader, one should act with propriety to persuade people to cooperate and get things done. He will be a bad manager and people will eventually walk away from him.

    • Black propaganda pa more! I’ve been to davao hundred times never did I encounter a people there that doesn’t like Duterte. And if he’s the topic pride and love is what you get from their faces and stories. So sorry but not so sorry. Duterte will be the next President of the Philippines.

  2. sivenar pineda on

    Your opinion is as good as mine J.S., you are more practical with your observation and unbiased evaluation.

  3. Some of the Filipinos who are supporters of Duterte really do know what are the criteria to consider in electing a President. They join the bandwagon so to speak. This is the “Trump effect” or now called locally as “Duterte Effect”. Many Filipinos are disgruntled in the performance of many of our leaders because of corruption, drugs, heinous crimes, poor performance of various government agencies, etc., etc.. The problem with joining the bandwagon is the driver or operator of the wagon itself. The driver does not know where the wagon or shall I say the train is going and does not know how to fix the parts of the wagon that are out of order. The bigger picture here is the tracks or roads that the wagon is using is so bad that the wagon can be derailed. What I am saying here is for the right leader to fix the roads and tracks first, then train the drivers – how to drive the wagon safely and the passengers in how to use the wagon. Can we then fix the roads or tracks by killing the driver or operator and then the passengers.

  4. Is the masa looking for someone who can bull-shit with sweet-talking and articulate b.s. (been there-done that) or someone foul-mouthed,undiplomatic,rough around the edges,who can solve problems, get things done ? Take your pick!

    • True.

      The ABS class is the quiet segment. It is the most critical, most informed, and has the most influence. This class has already decided which to vote from the very start of the campaign.

      It is this cadre of people who are moving stealthily to propel Duterte to power.

      It is this genteel crowd that accepts Duterte’s faults, but still support him because of the understanding that despite this presidential candidate’s crass behavior, he has the potential to impel Philippines into a first-world economy.

  5. Duterte cannot kill the big crooks, he even team up with them (Cayetano and Pimentel were two of the biggest DAP recipients).

    • There is bit of truthfulness in this statement. This is what I think and millions of wise Filipinos.