Saturday, October 25, 2008

When the chips are down

Miriam Defensor Santiago can be magnificent when she is angry. And she was magnificent last Thursday at the Senate hearing when she raved and ranted against the Secretary of the DILG and his protégée the PNP Chief.

Sure, we may say she has an axe to grind against Puno. Every time she sees him, she is reminded of the Sulo Hotel operations which made certain her overwhelming victory in Metro Manila and Western Visayas were snowed under by the “garcified” votes of Mindanao. (It might interest Madam Miriam to know that Garci, the loyal election operator of the late Leonardo Perez at the Comelec, went on exile in the US of A, afraid that Cory’s new commissioners would file cases against him. Garci quietly returned before the 1992 presidential elections, and along with Gorospe, later to gain notoriety as the “kissing lolo” in Comelec, worked for the FVR camp. Whether under the baton of Ronnie the Tree and his Sulo Hotel operations or under a separate coven, I do not know).

In Erap’s time, when Ronnie Puno was undersecretary, later secretary of the DILG, Senadora Miriam exposed his deal with a certain Mahogany Medical Supplies Corporation for compulsory drug testing. Of course, Erap paid her no heed at the time. Ronnie was “super-reliable” to Erap then as he is now to his Gloria and her Mike. And of course, the Ombudsman cleared Ronnie the Tree on these and perhaps a slew of other questioned deals.

But no matter what you may say of Miriam’s motives, and no matter how ballistic she got when faced by the seemingly unflappable but internally seething Puno, she made for great theatre last Thursday.

On the other side of the ring, there was the absence of Eliseo de la Paz. Doon pa lang, talo na. In this country, kapag wa ka apir --- guilty! General de la Paz may have been advised by his lawyer about his “rights”, and he followed legal counsel. But hey, this is the court of public opinion.

Versoza maintained that he did not authorize a cash advance for the 6.9 million pesos. Likely he did not. But how and why he did not have the answers as to how such a huge amount was withdrawn and for what justification, clearly showed that he was trying to cover up for his “mistah”.

Puno, for his part, after immediately “clearing” De la Paz while the latter was still in Moscow, saying that what he had were “contingency funds” authorized because he did not want his police officers and their wives to look like “paupers” in St. Petersburg, was now washing his Napolcom hands off the case. All they authorized, he said, was 2.3 million pesos, for the usual travel fare, room accommodations, and per diem. What happened to the contingency funds he so openly admitted a week ago? Search me, Puno virtually says.

Nilalaglag na si Eliseo de la Paz. In this dispensation, you are only good when you allow yourself to be “used” --- never mind if it means doing something illegal, or immoral. Remember, for the amoral Dona and her acolytes in the altar of power and greed, “the end always justifies the means”.

But when the chips are down, you just have to take the rap. In Tagalog, “bahala ka na sa buhay mo”. And that, it seems, is the short and unhappy life of police general Eliseo de la Paz.

No wonder the Dona flew to China a day ahead of the Beijing Euro-Asia conference on the financial crisis. The problem is for the “muchachos” to clean up.

* * *

And then, she will stay in China still, two days after her insignificant presence in the confab on melting financials is done. Why so?

Is it because JocJoc will be back this weekend? Iwas-pusoy na naman siya? So Al Cusi and his Atutubo will do their thing, as they did to the unfortunate Jun Lozada? Or will it be, bahala na si JocJoc on how to wiggle himself out of media’s prying questions? After all, Mercy the ombudswoman has been merciful, thus far.

And the relevant Senate committees, on agriculture as well as the Blue Ribbon, are not to keen on re-opening the “bolantic” fertilizer scam. Abroad likewise, their chairmen seem to be. Will their president, Manuel Villar, sign a warrant for the arrest of JocJoc, assuming he is in town by then?

These issues never die, no matter what Dona Gloria and her cohorts, declared or sub-rosa, do or not do. Whether it is Garci the cheat, or JocJoc the fake medicine man, or Ben the ZTE wheeler-dealer, or Romy the coward.

They have to take the rap for the Dona and her family. And when all the chips are down, bahala na kayo sa inyong buhay.

* * *

Which is why she can’t ever let go of power. Supposing she anoints someone, gets Ricky and Endika, Lucio and Lucio, Tom and Bobby, perhaps even Ramon and Francis, to foot the bill for “her” candidate in 2010, and conscripts once more Garci and Roque Bello and El Bello and her new nominees at Comelec to ensure his victory, what assurance would she have that when her curtains come closing, her “anointed” does not cave in to public pressure and allows the chips to fall where they may? Just like she does to all the hot potatoes thrown onto her lap?

Well, she has always said, “tutal, nakinabang naman kayo”.

And her anointed successor can likewise say, “total, nakinabang naman kayo, sobra-sobra pa. Kaya, sori, bahala na kayo sa inyong buhay.” He, he, he.

So, will there be elections come 2010, as the Dona and her gang fade quietly in the night? Wanna bet there won’t be any?


Anonymous said...

Sir Lito, lagi po akong nagbabasa ng editorial ninyo sa

Ako po ay isang OFW dito sa Saudi, matagal na rin po ako dito, since 2000 pa.

Nakakalungkot isipin na nakukuha pa ni Joke Joke Kamote na magsinungaling. Hindi ba under oath si Kamote...di ba bawal magsinungaling pag ganun ? Talaga pong nakaka-inis na ang nangyayari sa bansa natin.

Lumalabas ang mga nasa Malacañang eh MAFIA Family na, sina Don Mike at Doña Gloria. Parang Corleonem Barzinni, Tatagllia Families ng The Godfather, yung nga lang sa Godfather eh mga negosyo ang tinitra nila, etong Mafioso sa Malacañang eh, buong infrastructure na ng Pilipinas...

Pero alam ko po na sa darating na panahon pananagutan nila lahat ng mga pinag-gagawa ngayon masarap ang buhay nila, pero pag dating ng oras, hindi lang isa kundi isang katutak na parusa ang aabutin nilang lahat.

(Gusto ko po sana kayong imbitahan sa aking Blog, dalaw po kayo pag wala po kayong masyadong ginagawa...)