Tuesday, February 05, 2008

No honor among thieves

Yesterday, in an hour-long, emotionally charged privilege speech before the House of Representatives, right before 174 of his peers voted to strip him of his Speakership, JDV pretty much told GMA, "If I'm going down, I'm taking you with me, bitch."

I find it infinitely amusing when 2 crooked politicians who used to be in cahoots end up screwing each other over, which is primarily why I wanted De Venecia ousted (and not because I think Nograles will necessarily be a better Speaker). Now that JDV's lost his 5-term chokehold on the Congress leadership, he's going to raise hell for our President and the dirty rotten scoundrels around her. There's nothing more dangerous than a former ally-turned-mortal enemy, and it will be fun to see just how big a thorn in GMA's side JDV will be.

Not quite as amusing to witness was the 5 hours of voting and grandstanding (10% voting, 90% grandstanding) that took place during last night's session of Congress, where the motion to declare the post of Speaker vacant was passed. Roughly half of the 225 representatives present found the need to "explain" their vote, and about 7 of them did a decent job of it. The rest could be categorized as:
  • the apologetic backstabbers (those who began by extolling the virtues of JDV, only to shift gears with "however..." and end with a vote against their "good friend");
  • the shameless suck-ups (those who lovingly kissed either JDV's or GMA's ass);
  • the sanctimonious preachers (those who kept invoking God and quoting Bible passages);
  • the campaigning showboats (those who sang their own praises and repeatedly reminded everyone that they were acting on behalf of their constituents); and
  • the angels with dirty faces (those neophytes who whipped out their ironically tired old battlecry for change, and waved their naive idealism in everyone's faces as if it absolved them of all sin).
And then there were also the long-winded, the slow talkers, the self-contradictors, and the just plain stupid. It's frightening, really, the kind of legislators our country has, few of whom can string together a coherent argument. And even more terrifying is the thought that the majority of those buffoons voted GMA's way. As one congressman put it, the separation between the executive and legislative branches of government is only something taught in school, but not observed in reality.

Perhaps not surprisingly, the handful of sensible and well-delivered speeches I did hear came from representatives who voted in favor of the status quo, or who abstained all together. My personal favorite speech was Ronnie Zamora's, wherein he blasted the whole issue as nothing more than an internal conflict within the majority, and he emphatically quoted a line from Romeo and Juliet: "A pox on both your houses!" I find it reassuring that my congressman knows his Shakespeare. San Juan represent! Woot!

Yesterday's proceedings were painfully protracted, the atmosphere was seethingly spiteful, and overall reflective of the nasty politics that permeate public office. The ill-concealed personal agendas,
the full-frontal mudslinging, the implicitly accepted culture of corruption... if the House of Representatives truly represents the Filipino people (as the campaigning showboats never tire of declaring), then it's no wonder our country's in the sordid state it's in. And changing the leader of this pack of wolves won't change anything.


At Wednesday, February 06, 2008, Blogger Sean said...

It was a brilliant scenario, really. Someone should transcribe the man's speech for later generations to read, analyze, and write reflection papers about.

For that matter, just what were we expecting from a crooked partnership, anyway? It's not as though they were squarely under an "honor among thieves" clause... in fact, it felt a lot more like a give-and-take relationship at times. This thing was going to break apart sooner or later, and seeing it happen last night gave us just enough time to open that bag of popcorn.

At Wednesday, February 06, 2008, Blogger Ailee Through the Looking Glass said...

JDV created a monster, and now she refuses to be controlled by her maker. The villagers should all be running after both of them with pitchforks and torches, but instead they're rallying behind one or the other. Philippine politics is one big horror movie gone awry. =S


Post a Comment

<< Home