“There are two interrelated aspects to the leader’s role. The leader must exercise power efficiently and wisely. This includes good management, organizing tasks and solving problems… The second aspect – the main focus of this book – is how the leader presents, through action, appearance, and articulated values, a model that others will want to emulate.” — from The Leader by Michael Maccoby
THERE appears to be only one subject worth discussing these days, if one wishes to catch public attention – the elections on May 9, 2016. I should know, I read it everywhere. I see it everywhere. I know from all these indicators that if I must continue writing to have
an audience for my ideas I must write on the politics of the day or not write at all – burying all my more important ideas in the inner recesses of my mind. I am reminded though, that the best burial of all is to bury all politicians in oblivion, and all the pretenders who keep on proclaiming that the hope of the people of this country is in the elections on May 9, 2016.
The decades show nothing has changed
With a great degree of immodesty, I might as well let the kids know that election has been my game since I was six years old. At that age, my father was mayor of our town – Catarman, Misamis Oriental. Then, I got involved in the politics of our Central School when I ran for president of the student organization and won. At the Misamis High Oriental School, other than being editor-in-chief of our high school paper, the Misorien Torch, I ran for the presidency of the Senior Council and the Student Council and I won both positions.
Politics is in my blood. My first active attempt at national politics was to campaign for Senator Manuel Manahan for President of the Philippines under the Progressive Party of the Philippines (PPP). My first bid for political office was to run as regional assemblyman from Region 10 in Northern Mindanao under conditions of martial law and under my own political party, the Mindanao Alliance (MA), the first Opposition party organized under martial law. I won that election but President Marcos ordered that I should not be proclaimed. I could understand that because I spent one year, six months and eleven days in the Marcos political prisons, and he called me an “imponderable factor.”
Then, I ran for provincial governor of Misamis Oriental in 1980 under martial law and won – one of two provincial governors out of seventy-three in the country. Again, in 1984, I ran as Mindanao Alliance candidate for Assemblyman and won. As such, I orchestrated, for the national Opposition, the canvassing of the results of the 1986 presidential elections.
When the National Defense Minister Juan Ponce Enrile was on the verge of organizing a new government after the fall of President Marcos, according to MP Rene Cayetano, I just came on time as head of the Opposition negotiating committee to agree with Enrile that Cory and Vice-President Salvador “Doy” Laurel would organize the civilian government while Enrile should stay as Defense Minister and General Fidel V. Ramos would be Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
When Cory Aquino became President, Speaker Nicanor Yniguez, with the support of the Kilusan Bagong Lipunan (KBL) leadership, offered me to be the new Speaker of Parliament. I refused the offer, which on hindsight, I consider one of the worst mistakes in my life.
Another mistake was when I refused the offer of President Cory to be appointed as the first outsider to be Justice of the Supreme Court, out of my anger at the way the Cory boys were organizing the new government. Similarly, when Vice-President Doy Laurel, who was Minister of Foreign Affairs, wanted me to be Ambassador to the Union Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), I refused the offer as I did not like to be buried in the Russian winter, in the same manner that the Cory boys wanted me buried in the Supreme Court.
I became the legal counsel of some of the strategic rebel military leaders in the coups of 1987 and 1989, resulting in my having been charged by Secretary of Justice Franklin Drilon, now Senate President, with the non-existent non-bailable crime of rebellion complex with murder and multiple frustrated murders, with a shoot to kill order to boot. I also convinced, together with Generals Edgardo Abenina and Fortunato Abat, CSAFP General Angelo “Angie” Reyes to withdraw support for President Erap Estrada. As a gift from Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, I was arrested by his non-uniformed storm troopers with an attempt to salvage me and the ones who were arrested with me in a hotel room on the way to attending a birthday party. Immediately thereafter, I was charged together with my companions with the crimes of conspiracy to commit a coup, attempt to swindle money to finance a coup, and obstruction of justice to allegedly help a young lieutenant colonel, a former Chairman of the Young Officers Union, to evade arrest for a crime he did not commit.
All charges were dismissed for lack of evidence. And in the first election for senators after martial law, in 1987, I ran and won under the Grand Alliance for Democracy (GAD) together with Secretary of National Defense Juan Ponce Enrile, Senator Arturo Tolentino, Secretary of Labor Blas Ople, Governor Isidro Rodriguez of Rizal, Senator Kit Tatad, MP Wilson Gamboa, Colonel Jess Paredes, Banker Teng Puyat, Muslim Federal Party Chairman Abul Khayr Alonto, Vice-President Joseph Estrada, Senator Eva Estrada Kalaw, MP Edith Rabat and other stars of the Opposition. The official records of Comelec and Namfrel showed that we won the majority in the Senate. But the computers of President Cory decided otherwise, thus only two of our candidates were proclaimed – Enrile and Estrada. Thus, the unknowns and pygmies of the Cory crowd became computerized senators during the Cory watch.
Why am I narrating these events? This is what is known in law as qualifying a witness. And as witness to the current events, there is basis for my assessment or judgment on what will probably develop in the months ahead.
Awards for outstanding achievements
In my judgment, anybody who believes that the coming May 9, 2016 elections will bring better life to the Filipino should have his head examined, unless a miracle happens that Congressman Roy Señeres will be elected President. Consistent with this judgment, I have presumptuously created the Diliman Way Medal For Outstanding Achievements.
Congressman Roy Seneres – Medal of excellence in leadership for courageously espousing and advocating the cause of the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW), the contract workers and the Filipino downtrodden, relentlessly and without fear of the oligarchs who consistently manipulate the electoral process in this country. Seneres has brains in his balls and balls in his brains, and with specific program of government.
Vice-President Jojo Binay – The Alibaba Medal of Excellence for surviving and dodging the flood of charges for plunder and graft and corruption. Despite the overwhelming flood of evidence against him and members of his family which can easily convince any rational being that he and members of his family are guilty of the charges, he has the gall to travel around the country and say that he is innocent to the point that survey groups maintain Binay is number one in the presidential race. Any fool will know that this prediction is a lot of nonsense unless we assume that the Filipino voter is stupid or can be easily bought. For Binay to survive the avalanche of charges is a credit to balls and brains, thus this medal.
Secretary Mar Roxas – The Noynoy Cacique Medal for his non-stop recitals that he is the continuous advocate of the matuwid na daan and for dividing the country among the oligarchs while paying lip-service to the common people. Why can’t Mar be his man? He is an intelligent individual. His off the cuff replies to questions distinguish him from Binay and Duterte. He insults his origin – President Manuel Acuna Roxas, his grandfather, and Senator Gerardo Roxas, his father. Does he not realize that an Aquino endorsement is a kiss of death? It will take the PCOS machine to elect him President and that spells trouble for him and the country.
Senator Grace Poe – The Natural Born Medal of valor for maintaining that she is a natural-born citizen despite the relentless bashing by her sworn enemies, who have their own candidates, and whose knowledge of the law is minimal. Being natural born Filipino is the presumption of law in this country. He who alleges that she is not natural born has the burden of proof. Why the heck her lawyers are desperately looking for her parents is a great puzzler. It takes courage to sustain her claim that she is natural born, thus this medal.
Mayor Rodrigo Duterte – The Baby Face Nelson Medal for courageously maintaining that he has killed helpless drug pushers or users, in violation of provisions of our Constitution and our laws; for insulting and cursing the Pope; for vulgar expletives and profanities; for boasting about his vigorous powers with the help of Viagra resulting in adulterous and bigamous relationships with women other than his wife. It takes brains and balls to virtually run away with murders and other crimes without being prosecuted.
Senator Miriam Santiago – The Cancer Survivor Medal for having survived various cancers in her life. It takes a lot of courage to survive cancers of all kind without any damage to show for it and to continue maintaining that she has survived them all.
Your choice or mine
My choice is the revolution – peaceful constitutional revolution with the creation of a Constitutional Transition Government (CTG) based on sections 1 and 3, Article II of the Constitution which mandate that “sovereignty resides in the people and all government authority emanates from them” and the “Armed Forces of the Philippines is the protector of the people and the state.” This is a recurring refrain till it happens or if elections come to pass.
If there will be elections on May 9, 2016, the only intelligent choice of the Filipino voter is Congressman Roy Señeres – the only presidential candidate who brings hope for a better life to our people.