Was the Philippine Senate also a victim of Malacañang railroading?

Is it me or is there some kind of a muted national coming-to-terms in the aftermath of a six-month long impeachment trial that was “won” by the Malacañang of President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino III? Think of how one might suffer a temporary psychosis while engrossed in an intense video game, consumed by an adrenaline-fuelled pursuit of some nebulous digital goal coded into the absorbing scenario rendered before us in 64-bit-powered 60 frame-per-second living colour. The feeling of that last four hours that could’ve instead been spent having a meaningful conversation with family and friends or studying for the next day’s exam that had gone up in digital smoke only dawns upon one after crashing from the adrenaline fix.

That seems to be the condition now being suffered by Philippine society which, despite assurances from one politician or another, remains scarred by a deep gash across its fabric that divides Filipinos between the “Yellow mob” who frontline President BS Aquino’s civil service “cleansing” initiatives, and all the rest. The remains of the day which will persist even as the adrenaline from the six-month orgy of exercising the “political” nature of an impeachment trial subsides are starting to emerge as more and more people come to a slow realisation of what exactly had been done. Indeed, some of the former Senator-Judges seem to be in the midst of a bit of personal soul searching as speculation mounts around how such an overwhelming bloc that arose within the Senate to convict Corona came to be.

A wistful Senator Jinggoy Estrada now urges President BS “not to pursue cases against deposed Chief Justice Renato Corona” — bizarre, considering that the very premise of his bloc’s guilty verdict is Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile’s characterisation of Corona’s understatement of his SALN with the word dolus which, in legal-speak is used to describe a deed marked by “a will or intention to do wrong“. You’d think that a judge who premises his verdict on his personal perception that the defendant willfully did wrong would stand squarely behind further initiatives to apply the full force of the law on that defendant for the other possible counts not covered by his case.

Is it possible then that Senator Jinggoy Estrada is really not convinced by the substance that supposedly underwrites the very verdict he issued last week? For that matter, is it possible that the Senate too is itself a victim of the same railroading that the House of Representatives suffered, cowed by the rampage of a “furious” President BS Aquino?

Palagay ko wag na. Nakakaawa eh,” (“In my opinion, the [persecutors] should desist [from further legal action against Corona]. It is too cruel.”) [Estrada] said in an ANC interview.

Perhaps not as compassionate as Estrada but maybe also applying a bit more reflection on the manner with which they voted on Corona’s fate, it is likely that the other Senators would also come to understand the full implications of what they had just done in the coming weeks. Already, the Senate is launching an inquiry on the way the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) “share” information…

Senators on Monday grilled the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) regarding their memorandum of agreement (MOA) which allows them to share documents and information about persons suspected to be violating the law.

“You know what worries me here is I’m worried about the effect on our privacy laws,” Senator Joker Arroyo said during Monday’s Senate hearing on the MOA between the BIR and AMLC.

The chief judge in Corona’s trial, for his part, adds..

“I think we have to restudy this whole thing [MOA],” [Enrile] said, adding that he had only allowed the Ombudsman to reveal information about impeached Chief Justice Renato Corona’s bank transactions because his lawyers had voluntarily brought her as a witness to the impeachment court.

This plus the sudden unexpected hint of compassion on the part of one of Corona’s judges comes just as a clear manifestation of the chest-beating that is likely going on within Malacañang today was provided by presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte who “laughed off former Chief Justice Renato Corona’s plans for the future”. Responding to lawyer Jose “Judd” Roy III’s revelation earlier that Corona could go back to the academe to teach law, Valte said, “He’s making me laugh on a Sunday,” and that the former Chief Justice should “get a refresher course from [Bureau of Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares]”.

Such a lack of magnanimity following such a dubious “victory” speaks volumes about the character of the office that leads the Filipino people today.

Naisahan tayo.

Perhaps so poignant a lament coming from those who lost a well-fought battle, but so heartfelt just the same. This was after all a “political exercise” — something that the usual suspects harped about in the early days of the trial when the defense team had bared the obvious lack of any legal bases in the impeachment complaint submitted by the House of Representatives.

Is there justice in the Philippines?

I recall a former noted blogger who in his more reflective days pondered some points Yours Truly had articulated a while back (boldface added for emphasis)…

Some of his more interesting points are (as I see them)

[…]

2. Filipinos do not understand democracy, freedom, etc. in substantive but only in the most superficial and self-defeating manner; that the Filipino family is not just the bedrock of society, it is one of the root causes of the country’s moribund state; it might even be asked, is Philippine society by its very nature, unjust? Also, that Filipinos seem congenitally incapable of the hard work (and by extension, unwilling to demonstrate a basic requirement of maturity, delaying self-gratification).

3. Un unhealthy contempt for intellectual effort; unwillingness to innovate; refusal to engage in critical thinking or to confuse partisan sniping for critical thought; pride becomes a substitute for achievement.

Indeed, the curtains have come down upon the six-month self-gratification spectacle. Taking stock of what really has or has not been achieved starts.

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19 Comments on “Was the Philippine Senate also a victim of Malacañang railroading?”

  1. Do not be surprised by Jinggoy’s call not to pursue a case against CJ Corona. He is merely doing a Pilate for his 2013 Senatorial Bid. I will not fall for that.

  2. It will be hilarious — the Senate Court and Malakanyang will be laughingstock — if “ex post facto” or “rules of evidence” results in a Pilipinas court ruling that FORMER JUSTICE CORONA NOT GUILTY.

    1. a Pilipinas lawyer JCC got disbarred or suspended (— I think suspended –) for some thing.

      Pilipinas Constitution says impeachment should be for a HIGH CRIME. You’d think HIGH CRIME means deLima or Lacierda will seek that former Justice Corona gets disbarred, at least.

      Abangan!!!

      1. TROLL.

        She was ‘strong-willed’ because she was ‘strong’ to defy rules in order to jail a supposed political enemy. Why would you admire a staunch leftist? 😛

        What if she will be disbarred for contempt?

        1. Unfortunately, the matuwid na daan by BS Aquino will try to inhibit the ruling. Or plainly, his hordes of goons have finally gotten to really scare the judiciary that they’d just leave it as is.

          Sad sad fate for us, Filipinos

      2. @Nutzi straight path

        I never said I hated your love De Lima. Do you realize the implications if fatuous Leila becomes Chief Justice? She is related to the wife of communist Maoist leader Jose Maria Sison. An enemy of the state. I am not a bekie. I am after the truth. Are you a communist sympathizer?

        1. so sec. delima is communist because her relative is the wife of founder of communist party of the philippines, jose maria sison… hmmmm….

          siguro, idagdag pa natin na dati siya head ng commission of human rights (na sa tingin ko ay tingin mo ay front din ng komonismo)…

          may kadugo bang bekie si hitler…?

    1. “….This situation shall bring to fruition the Maoist CPP’s 5-year program (2010-2015) of attaining the so-
      called Strategic Stalemate against government. Hindi na ‘stalemate’ dahil sila na ang komokontrolar sa ating gobyerno kung sakali man matuloy ang pagkahirang ni Sec. De Lima, bilang Chief Justice,” explained the former NPA political and commanding officer in Eastern and Central Visayas turned pro-democracy advocate….”

      ex-cpp/npa/ndf ba si sec. de lima? si aquino ba ay dati ding miyembro ng makakaliwang grupo? si llamas ba ay ung nasa order of battle ng sandatahang lakas na isang central committe ng cpp/npa/ndf….?

      1. Ung tatay niya si Ninoy, marunong siyang makisama sa mga komunista. If you read Nick Joaquin’s book “The Aquinos of Tarlac”, his view on Communism is changed when he was a war correspondent during the Korean War. And he even helped the NPA rebels to hide their weapons when Ninoy was Hacienda Luisita’s first administrator. Noynoy is too dumb to chose his men so he chose those who belong from the Left.

        So Corona was right after all: the Left is taking over the government.

        1. si ninoy ay marunong makisama sa komunista… so, komunista ba siya? idelohiya ba ng komunismo ang bayan nya pra tuligsain ang mga kamalian o pagkukulang ng dating pangulong macoy, o ang batayan nya ay ang mga nakikita ng kanyang mga mata na kahirapan at kawalang pagasa sa mga magsasaka di lang hacienda luisita, kundi ng buong bansa, ng mga mangigisda, manggagawa at ng mga mabababang antas ng paghahanapbuhay noong mga panahong iyon…?

          kung ikaw bay ay kaibigan ng isang rebelde ay rebelde ka na din? o ng isang politiko, eh politiko ka na din?

          kung tama si corona na ang mga komunista ng ang may kontrol sa pamahalaan ng pilipinas eh sila, kasama na ang mga lahat ng naging opisyal ng pamahalaan mula ng mawala si macoy ang may sala, hinayaan nilang unti-unting nakaangat sa kapangyarihan ang mga komunista, isang istratehiya ng komunismo na pagagaw ng kapangyarihan ay mula sa loob ng pamahalaan papalabas, di tulad ng kung ilang dikada na nilang ginagawa na mula sa mga mamamayan tatungo sa gitna ng kapangyarihan ng pamahalaan…

          so wala ang ang “changes” na isinusulong nyo?

  3. The Corona impeachment taught us many lessons. I believe the Senators, did not look very much the consequences of their actions. It was a Kangaroo Court of Enrile, with false witnesses accepted as true witnesses; fabricated or illegally procured evidences, accepted as true evidence…the five minutes impeachment in Congress, itself was a violation of the: due process…Would these Senators and Congressmen, be willing to be tried in this kind of Court? They are even all terrified to sign the waiver…including Noynoy Aquino…this is the country, we have…the lawmakers are the violators of the law..

  4. “But daddy did it this way! And grandpa did it that way! If you get caught up with tradition, you rarely think out of the box. Tradition can be a great enabler as it can be destabilizer. Tradition is great when it comes along with something but not when you’re just using the name itself to succeed.” – Colin Cowherd

    —how to describe the Philippine culture

  5. Jinggoy, more or less, suffered the same fate as Corona’s when he and his father were arrested, charged, judged and imprisoned. Nobody among those senators/judges have the same experience as Jinggoy. Also, his expression of not preferring to pursue further cases against Corona maybe seen as a Christian gesture of forgiveness to somebody who committed a wrong.

    Is there justrice in the country? Yes. We have seen it in the Corona trial. Fair, transparent and peaceful.

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