What a Duterte-led ‘people power’ rally might be like

Funny the way things turn out. Time was when supporters of politicians like current Philippine President Benigno Simeon ‘BS’ Aquino III and his ilk in what is now known as the “Yellow Mob” used to be quick to draw upon the notion that a “people power” show-of-force could pretty much over-rule any product of the Philippines’ legal framework. Inquirer columnist Conrado de Quiros, for example, made a name for himself citing how anything that gets in the way of an Aquino presidency back during the 2009-2010 presidential campaign will have to answer to the threat of street display of the “true people’s will” which could spontaneously erupt at any time.

Back then, de Quiros generously gushed about the “magic” of BS Aquino’s appeal to the general Filipino public…

Noynoy holds the key to it. If he discovers it, he will raise, like Aragorn who conscripted the dead kings and their legions in “Lord of the Rings,” an army mightier than any of his enemies can muster.


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How times change the tide. The only army we see today is Duterte’s army of rabid followers — so rabid that they will probably raise hell as soon as they perceive a serious enough threat to their bet’s bid for the Philippine presidency. Unlike the Yellow Mob who advocate Gandhi-style non-violent protest, however, Duterte’s Mob take their cue from their gun-toting tough-talking vigilante champion. In short, the disturbing question at hand is, what sort of “people power” will Duterte’s followers exhibit when they choose to exercise their “right” to “hit the streets”?

Back in the day, Yellow Mobs would usually adorn their rallies with rosaries and yellow ribbons, perhaps start the occassion with a prayer and a bit of spiritual reflection, and then go off to invite others to join their giant love-in in the spirit of “interfaith solidarity”… blah blah blah. Priests and nuns would be present in abundance in most of these rallies further lending further contributing to the semblance of peace and prayerfulness supposedly promoted by these “people power” exercises. Indeed, you can play Political Correctness Bingo or Bleeding Heart Peacenik Bingo when listening to a news reporter covering a Yellow Mob rally on TV.

Now that Duterte’s bid for the presidency is gaining critical mass with an increasingly-agitated growing throng of supporters clamoring ever-loudly for “change” (that word again) in the coming 2016 presidential elections, it would be interesting to speculate on what form Pinoy-style street parliamentarianism may take in the coming months and years.

Suffice to say, it would be an extreme stretch of the imagination to expect a rally composed of Duterte supporters following the same theme. A Duterte “people power” rally (if it will even be called that) will likely be an anarchist-styled riot — probably involving lots of vandalism, roads blocked with burning tires, and even firearms being wantonly fired in the air by rallyists riding on Toyota HiLux pickups. Hakot may be an even bigger enterprise in such rallies considering that most of the participants will likely be flooding into Imperial Manila from the southern provinces. I’d buy stocks in inter-island passenger shipping companies and durian plantations if I were you.

The good thing about this is that Mindanao is finally asserting itself. After many decades of getting suckered into being the Philippines’ “bread basket” without ever getting commensurately rewarded for that excellent supporting role, its residents are now making their voices heard at the capital. We may be seeing the dawn of a new era when Luzon-based politics could be strongly counter-balanced by a resurgent Mindanao. Will Duterte be up to the task of leading such a worthwhile movement?

Abangan ang susunod na kabanata!

13 Replies to “What a Duterte-led ‘people power’ rally might be like”

  1. funny, i seem to remember people congregating at Luneta asking Duterte to run. isn’t that People Power as well? people coming together to voice a support for a political candidate (who, then, didn’t want anything to do with the race)? and they left no marks whatsoever in the place; rubbish was placed in bins, thrash were picked up and disposed properly, and they dispersed quietly, with no damage to the place. just because Duterte has a brash personality, don’t expect his supporters to be the same.

  2. I find this article really funny. Nothing else to write about GRP? Here you go again with your incorrect assumptions. Ever heard of the ‘Million People March’ for Duterte at Quirino Grandstand last September? Had there been any form of violence reported during the rally? You’re trying too hard to put Duterte and his “rabid” supporters in a bad light.

    Here’s the challenge again GRP, because you sound like political experts, publish an article showing each candidate’s track record. Rate them according to competence, integrity and leadership experience. Let’s see who will come out at the top. Now, if you think none of the candidates should become the next President of the Republic of the Philippines, then stop this whole nonsense. You, I, the rest of the readers, we are all just wasting our precious time!

    1. I already wrote about what Duterte has to offer the Filipino people in the way of some semblance of a proposed platform. Here is what I say in my article Rodrigo Duterte’s promise to Filipinos in his bid for the presidency

      Duterte’s main value proposition to Filipino voters addresses those latter two key pillars of any just and truly free society and takes the bull by the horns by revolving around one thing: taking a tough approach to addressing rampant criminality in the Philippines.

      This simple platform in combination with the clear track record of results he boasts in its application in Davao makes Duterte the only presidential candidate that presents what all the rest lack: (1) a strong track record of governance and administration, (2) a clear ralllying platform, and (3) the leadership attitude and chops to deliver.

      Then again, who gives a shit, right? I keep emphasizing that partisanship in Philippines is almost always rabid bordering on religious zealotry. So there really isn’t any room for the sorts of thinking required to compare the different platforms of the current crop of candidates (much the way it always has been over the last several elections since 1986).

      People are just interested in who’s gonna slap who over whatever petty issue or personal slight. Kaboboan Central. That’s Philippine political ‘debate’ in a nutshell.

      Funny enough for you?

  3. Aha! Got your point. So yeah, we just have to add more fuel to the fire to keep the “Kabobohan” going. We can’t do anything about it, right?

    Instead of starting a decent and sound political debate on what really matters, blogs like GRP should just ride on to whatever it is that’s been attracting the attention of the majority. So it now boils down to Roxas and Duterte. The other candidates don’t deserve the limelight because people won’t pay attention anyway. (meaning, they won’t even bother to visit your blog). I now fully understand why 98% of your latest articles are all about Duterte and Roxas. Redundant subjects, all for the purpose of getting a wider audience. (Much like your AlDub articles :))

    Sorry Miriam Defensor Santiago and Jejomar Binay, you’re out of the battle. (Let’s not forget Binay is consistently number 2 in surveys. If he wins, goodluck to us!)

  4. We will wait and see. Filipinos are prone to the extreme stupidity.

    Aquino YellowTards used religion, as a front. Dutertards may use gun totting people, to enforce their messages.

    Why not give free Viagra, to make people join the DuterTard rallies?

  5. These north versus south sentiments can very well spark a conflict reminiscent of the American Civil War, especially if DU30 loses.

    Well, maybe thats too much of a stretch. Though I would really find it extremely satisfying to see common Filipinos getting off their asses fir once to fight and, if need be, die for what they believe in.

  6. If Du30 loses or if his supporters smell even an ounce of foul Vote-count play, all hell will break loose, WW3 will start, and China will have to nuke this country to contain the spreading contagion.

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