“Beware the Ides of March have come but they are not gone.” so ended our post in What Next for Post 8/23 Philippines?, last September 5, 2010. Roughly one and a half month after, October 19 to be exact – the Inquirer’s headlines reads “Anti Aquino group airs threats”.
A group, composed of a motley sprinkling of former opponents as well as allies of ex-president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, is styling itself as an anti-Aquino opposition, according to sources in the intelligence community.
The group is watching closely the “plunging” ratings of President Benigno Aquino III, and once disenchantment sets in, “they can step in,” the sources said.
“The group purports to be a sort of opposition group against the Aquino government, which they consider as too close to the United States government,” the sources said.
The group is out to “destabilize” the Aquino government but “not necessarily” through violent means, one source said.
The group, which calls itself the Solidarity for Sovereignty (S4), took out a full-page advertisement in the Philippine Daily Inquirer last Tuesday, and declared a vacancy in all elective positions because of the “unconstitutionality” of the May 10 elections.
It called on the Armed Forces to “fulfill its constitutional mandate” and immediately support the group in making sovereignty “a full reality in our country.”
The group said the May 10 elections, which brought President Aquino to power, was unconstitutional because it was administered by a foreign corporation, the Smartmatic-TIM, resulting in “a digital president all the way to the last mayor.”
S4 also said the recent Quirino Grandstand hostage-taking and botched rescue showed “the extreme incompetence of the present leadership.”
The group said the Supreme Court plagiarism issue was an act of “dishonesty” that weakened the country’s sovereignty and called on the high-court justices to make the “extreme sacrifice of resignation to restore decency and integrity in the Supreme Court.”
Obviously this is a misguided attempt to stoke disgruntled elements of the Philippine military towards another adventuristic putsch instead of taking the parliamentary route and upholding the rule of law – not the rule of the barrel of the gun.
Inasmuch as I criticize the dysfunctionality of the plurarity sysyem which produces minority presidents, the fact is those are the rules of the game – the social contract so to speak. And until such time that such is changed (which we strongly advocate – federal parliamentary, by the way) – we are bound to observe those rules.
It is quite a stretch to say that the election is unconstitutional because the 2010 elections was administered by a foreign corporation. Fact is – the COMELEC administered the elections and was in total control of the process, therefore the election is constitutional. For all the talk about irregularities – My position is – innocent until proven guilty under a court of law. The S4 should take its case to court – or lobby for impeachment of Aquino, instead of relying on the mob. If Aquino is to be removed, the opposition owes it to the country to do so in a manner befitting a country governed by the rule of law – not by the mob, or by bullets, or by mannah.
The constitutional mandate of the Armed Forces is to follow the chain of command as provided under the Constitution. As of July 1, 2010, BSA3 is the Commander-In-Chief of the AFP – and all elements are mandated to follow the superior civilian authority PERIOD.
I find it shallow that S4 will make a fuss on national sovereignty – when by the very act of our application – we agreed to commit to the program. If there was an issue about national sovereignty – it should have been addressed prior to applying for the program. Therefore it stands to reason that there were no, and there are still no sovereignty issues. To be blunt about it – Beggars cannot be choosers! Intiendes?
I totally agree with the extreme incompetence of the present leadership – BUT, they are the elected representatives of the citizenry. What that highlights really is the incompetence of a large portion of the citizenry – an incompetence to select competent leadership.
And so we blogged like mad prior, during, and after the elections –
Noynoy Aquino’s supporters: are they anti-intellectual? – (Definitely)
Analysis: Noynoy’s Major Major Booboo (Quite a lengthy list)
Kahirapan ng Pinoy: Hindi dulot ng “Korapsyon” kundi Kabobohan, Sobrang Hilig sa “Party” at Katamaran (Just Flash the L sign and Party on.. Loser)
Noynoy Aquino supporters are getting fed up (De Lima will age prematurely, Robredo a-hurting from buttplugs given by BSA3 and Puno)
The Reproductive Health Bill: empowering Filipinos (Only thing he got right – separation of church and state. Implementation however is another matter – allocation of budgets for contraceptives need to be reviewed throughly)
Mendoza siege: P-Noy’s, the PNP’s and the Media’s incompetence shown to the world (BAM!! BAM!!! BAM!!! Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego?)
Walang Pagsisisi sa Simula – The First Three Weeks (Huh, imagine the looks on their faces by the 100th day!!! Schadenfreude – Priceless!)
Noynoy’s win might make Filipinos the butt of jokes around the world (Continuing a tradition – Chip Tsao, Teri Hatcher, Adam Carolla)
Time Magazine paints a picture of Noynoy and it is not good (It is worse than “not good” – actuality – not testosterone-deficient “reality TV” – hits the spot)
President Noynoy Aquino’s first State of the Nation Address (SONA) – (No need to restate the details of an obviously LOUSY speech)
SWS and Pulse Asia polling firms owned by relatives and friends of Noynoy Aquino (can’t hide the dissatisfaction baby – TRIBUNE. Plus sixty is President Aquino’s net satisfaction rating three months into his presidency based on the results of a survey conducted by the polling firm SWS from Sept. 24 to 27 this year or almost a month after the disastrous Luneta hostage taking. This was the second highest rating among all post-1986 presidents in their first one hundred days in office, even higher than that his mother, the late President Cory who got plus 53 in May 1986. Only President Ramos who got a plus 66 in September 1992 topped his numbers while President Estrada equalled his public approval at plus 60. It is 23 percent lower than P-Noy’s net approval rating of plus 83 before his assumption to office. That is a very clear precipituous decline of a little under 8 percent every month which should be a cause for worry. It means that while the public remains satisfied with the President’s performance it is looking for results and changes beyond the rhetoric and the gestures such as the “no wang-wang,” stopping at red lights and other such welcome initiatives.
Noynoy’s first 100 days: Highway to hell or stairway to heaven? (Obviously – HELL… as in HELL YEAH HIGHWAY TO HELL IT IS, paved with the proverbial good intentions.
The devil’s advocate in me however is not closing the doors that this can be a manufactured ad – a high stakes pre-emptive game to take away steam and gain sympathy for the Aquino administration. Much as it did in its RHB playbook. As names are being floated, we will find out in the days to come, if the players are for real or not. If it is found out though that this is another caper by the comm group – it can seriously boomerang – and Aquino’s coiffured elves should be careful with what they wish for because it might be granted.
If the personalities behind S4 are legit – the dots of Linda Montayre, Nur Misuari, and Norberto Gonzales seem to be leading to FVR or someone in the FVR network – like JdV.
The recent amnesty of Trillanes serves to embolden military adventurism. The overtures of S4 to the AFP are of an ultra-nationalist militaristic flavor with roots traced to a promtion system which has been bypassed – leading to an equally opposite move to bypass the constitutional processes in effecting regime change. To make a call to fulfill a constitutional duty to protect sovereignty without prescribing the legal and prescribed path for doing so is a thinly veiled call to remove the Aquino administration via extra constitutional means. If we are to show that we have politcally evolved a bit – we can at least start off by adhering to the rule of law.
If anything, now would be a good time for Aquino to tackle charter change and the FOIA instead of passing more pork barrel and dicing up the Road Tax Fund –
In a closed-door, all-party caucus Friday, the House leadership decided to give each representative an additional P50 million to be taken from the lump sum funds of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) as contained in its proposed budget of P90.9 billion.
All congressmen except for party-list representatives will also get as much as P25 million each as their share of the Road User’s Tax, which is collected annually from owners of private and public vehicles as a motor vehicle user’s charge (MVUC).
Even as I am reminded of the dictum Cedant arma togae – Let arms yield to the toga. (Let violence give place to law), the S4 ad, if legit – will not be the last and will mark the slippery slope the Philippines is taking. History might just be getting ready to repeat itself.
Beware the ides – Jueteng, Puno, IIRC Report, Wang Wang, Increase in prices of utilities and commodities, Land reform and HLI, Infighting – the spirit of Cory’s incompetence never left – Deja Vu. Expecting different results from doing the same thing? S4 seems to agree with Aquino.