Friday, November 30, 2007

Coup d'etat by press con

For the life of me, I can't quite understand how checking in a hotel can unseat a president simply by the magnificence of one's words - unless you're Mahatma Gandhi bringing down the British Empire to its knees or Jesus of Nazareth preaching in Galilee.

A coup d'etat, properly executed, succeeds only by barging into the palace, firing at the obstacles and killing the president. So why did Senator Trillanes did a rehash of his failed Oakwood mutiny? If he knew he had no chance of success this time, then what was his intention? To make it to the headlines once again?

If his intention were to highlight once again the iniquity of President Arroyo's administration, he hardly has to invade Manila Pen to make that point. The people already know too well that the sitting president is not exactly made of outstanding character.

If Senator Trillanes thought there would be hordes of people to welcome their action and usher in another People Power, then his reading of the public pulse was way off the mark. The Filipino People will rally for freedom, never for a military junta.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Security at the Batasan is a joke

I was away for about three weeks, and terribly missed the Philippines. When I got back, I read in the papers about the assassination of a congressman inside the Batasan itself.

Like it or not, politics here in the Philippines is as exciting as any other spectator sports. When you buy a newspaper here in the Philippines, you really get your money's worth unlike, say, in Singapore where all you read about in the front pages is the stock market this, liquidity that, and all that sort of boring stuff.

I saw Congressman Golex say on ANC that the security at the Batasan was probably too lax. I beg to disagree. The security is not lax, it's almost non-existent.

Two months ago we had an exhibit at the North Wing of the Batasan to highlight an illegitimate debt that purchased bad incinerators, and we were riding a jeepney with all our materials. We just went past the Batasan gates and no security guard bothered to stop us or issued a whimper of objection at our brashness. They just let us drove inside the compound. The quality of the security inspections at the La Salle Taft campus exceeds by leaps and bounds the perfunctory review, if any, they subject you to at the Batasan or for that matter in the Senate.

And you know what? Security people at government offices have a double standard. The pricier the vehicle you are in, the laxer the inspection they'll subject you to. So if you would like to assassinate someone, enter the government compound in style and you'll have no problem.