And so the country has just celebrated the 26th anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution. And so President Noynoy Aquino has babbled about his daang matuwin (straight path) for the gazillionth time. And so he has urged Filipinos to take action against the judiciary yet again.
Don't you just tire of him? No matter what he says, how much he says, and how often he says them, Noynoy is still unable to really rally people behind him.
The President desperately wants people to believe in the evils of the judiciary, repeatedly painting negative images of the Supreme Court and especially of Chief Justice Renato Corona, who is now the subject of a dragging impeachment trial. That he clearly has no regard for the rule of law is one; his disrespect for the impeachment process is another. "I cannot be gagged," he so obnoxiously declared. Noynoy is evidently going for trial by publicity even when the case is already being tried by the Senate.
Unfortunately for him, not everyone is solved on that publicity he's so obsessed with. Even if some think that Corona is guilty, they also believe someone railroaded the impeachment. Were there really that many congressmen who are speed-readers? And while we're at it, I'm also amazed at how fast that Pasay RTC judge can read to determine probable cause in the electoral sabotage case filed against former President Gloria Arroyo. Or am I the only slow reader out there?
Ironically, this all sounds like a dictatorship in the making, something his parents fought so hardly against. From Day 1 Noynoy was vocal about his opposition to Corona, going as far as saying then that he does not recognize him as Chief Justice. Clearly, he wants Corona out, and it has been his crusade ever since.
Now that the case is being tried, people find entertainment in the proceedings, thanks to the bungling prosecution team who have, in one way or another, been scolded, berated, lectured, and warned by the senator-judges and the presiding officer. So Noynoy repeatedly goes on a publicity campaign against Corona, or segues to his artificially-crafted "love life" to divert attention from the prosecution's ineptitude.
But why can't Noynoy seem to generate that unified support from the Filipino people? His trust ratings remain high yet people remain somewhat indifferent to what he wants us to feel. Are people already tired of his daang matuwid battle cry?
Or are people finally seeing that this straight path actually leads to nowhere, that all this vindictiveness is just all that there is?
The President boasts about the several credit upgrades we've seen in the past year and a half but our economy is still hinged on dollar remittances from OFWs and the call center bubble. Poverty and joblessness are still up, oil prices continue to skyrocket, inflation has not been contained, crimes are still rampant, infrastructure is wanting. The quality of education in our country has been on a steady decline while the level of healthcare we have is dismal. Law enforcement is still widely unpopular and our military is a joke. And Noynoy is challenging China?
Or worse, are people now realizing that this straight path is not really straight all along?
That film and music piracy is not a priority of his administration was his quick retort when presidential adviser on political affairs Ronaldo Llamas was caught on camera buying pirated DVDs at a mall. What a way to support the entertainment industry and intellectual property rights! Or better yet, what a way to build the international community's confidence in the Philippines in the global war against piracy!
That it is industry practice for casino operators to provide free accommodations was his immediate reply when PAGCOR chair Cristino Naguiat Jr., his close friend and classmate at the Ateneo de Manila University, was dragged in a bribery scandal. Oh how quick was Noynoy to defend him before even ordering any investigation into the matter! Now he's invoking the presumption of innocence until proven guilty rule, that he says also applies to Corona. Then why is he repeatedly making statements of Corona's guilt? Apparently it's okay to issue such statements against Corona (and Arroyo) but not when it's targeted at his dear friend. I suppose that this is his own brand of justice.
Oh, Noynoy, whatever the reason, you still cannot pull a crowd in. You still cannot convince people into wholeheartedly believing what you want them to believe. You still cannot set our hearts on fire with your (self-)righteous cause. You still cannot rally us as one behind you.
Ninoy and Cory would be really disappointed in you.
UPDATE: Look what I've found:
Noynoy's message on the 26th anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution, which RTVMalacanang uploaded on YouTube, has so far elicited an overwhelming 925 dislikes versus a paltry 19 likes. You can view the video here, and like or dislike as you wish. It's nearly nine minutes long, though.