The Lost Translation of Rodrigo Duterte

rodrigo_duterte

All this anxiety and hand-wringing in certain groups about a Duterte presidency is becoming OA (overacting and whiny). Yes, I am speaking to those of you who actually think that the Philippines will suddenly descend into The Killing Fields, not those who are sowing fear for political motives (we all know you are the real monsters). RELAX.

Look at Davao. Are people walking around in fear? No. It works. On the contrary, people feel safe and secure, even women travelling alone at night. Do you see a “river of blood” as Raissa Robles puts it? The last time I checked, Davao was still a democracy.

Duterte is like the Bible. You don’t take the man literally word for word, but figuratively, as one should take a 70 year old mayor who hails from one of the most dangerous, poor and crime-prone regions of the country. The man is old school; he will call the boogeyman on you. He is the father figure who will threaten with a raised hand ready to hit your naughty behind.

Now you might say, but I am not a child to be threatened. I am a towering intellectual, a writer, a poet. Well, tough twinkies to you. The bluster was not meant for your ears. It was meant for the rest of the country that we often ignore or forget exists.

What is scary? That the elections are dirty, and people refuse to concede. THAT scares me.

Charles Englund

May 8 , 2016

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26 Comments on “The Lost Translation of Rodrigo Duterte”

  1. bring those guys the kool-aid and tell em to chill. they can join their saviors ninoy and cory if they desire.
    else, they can help rebuild this country.

  2. I agree 100%.

    To me there are two things Duterte possesses that none of the other presidential candidates (including MDS) have: wit and charisma.

    Whenever his enemies hurl insults and allegations, he doesn’t deny nor confirm (at least not on the onset) anything — instead he uses hyperbole mixed with fluff talk and banter (e.g. when he said he has less than 200 million, I thought that was brilliant). It seems he already knows how they’ll react and how he’ll counter their reactions before they even have time to think.

    He’s also the only person who can talk to the NPA, the muslims, the poor, the rich, etc, without alienating them — au contraire he even inspires them (the poor), makes them laugh with his witty remarks (the middle and upper classes) and give them a sense of well being by addressing them in subservience (he calls everyone “sir” or “ma’am”).

    This guy is a venerable thinker, a master of his craft with decades of experience under his belt. He is sneaky and manipulative — negative words, I know, but I’m glad that he’s on the Filipino peoples’ side, not on the oligarchs’. And it makes me feel good to think there are a few people who see him the same way I do.

    I’ve rooted for him since 2012 (back then I never thought he would run for office) because of his “exhibit A”. Late last year I’ve had my doubts but chose to stick with him, especially when his enemies brought up all those black propaganda bullshit against him. The way he reacted and how he displayed a let-the-chips-fall-where-they-may, hit-me-with-your-best-shot attitude just did it for me. I’m a critical thinker and I like making fun of people who think themselves smart. This guy earned my respect (a hard feat), and millions of Filipinos’.

    Digong, if there’s ever a remote chance you would read this post, congratulations! You deserve this victory. I hope you’ll do everything you promised to do. And I hope you won’t forget us, the people who believed in and stuck with you to the very end.

  3. Only the most irresponsible and dictatorial government will try to use fear to manipulate the people. Their actions merely solidified Duterte’s vote. And they say Duterte is the “dictator” Tsk tsk.

  4. “What if a cat, is black or white. If it can catch mouse…it is a good cat”…from the late Chinese leader Deng Ziao Peng. The late Chinese leader was a pragmatist; not a politicaal ideologue .

    It was then, the beginning of China’s opening to the world. Out from their being isolationist country. They embraced capitalism (market mechanism economy), as they call it. Now, China is rich. The foremost exporter of goods in the present world. They are advanced in Science and Technology.

    If Mayor Duterte will be elected. I wish him good luck. There are much work, for him awaiting, in righting what is wrong in our country…it is a very huge task…

  5. I disagree with you. Maybe you were not born during Martial Law so you probably don’t understand that men like him who have no regard for the rule of law will not have any qualms about bending or breaking them without compunction. Unless his death squads and him being on the HRW watch list is not good enough of a warning for you then you might want to stay until the carnage starts. I won’t. I’ve lost faith in this country. Voters cannot be reasoned with and would rather put their future and our country’s future in the hands of a would be Hitler. Sorry, not sorry but I’m not OA. I am heavily worried and concerned. There is a difference and you acting dismissively as if our emotions are of no value is insensitive. No one actually realizes they have created a monster until it’s too late and hindsight has always been 50/50.

    1. @saelynne:

      You have the right to disagree. If you fell to the YellowTard propaganda of Martial Law, of the bygone era… Then, I understand your concern.

      However, we have not seen any “death camps” or “labor camps” in Davao City; as in Nazi Germany… . The Davao Penal Colony is there, but , it is a prison. Not, a labor camp…

      Let us give Mayor Duterte, a chance to see what he can do…

      1. Of course it’s always EASIER to assume that anyone who does not support Hitler 2.0 is for the Yellow camp, right? Rather than maybe thinking that I’d rather follow someone who has credentials and knowledge in international law and diplomacy; someone who doesn’t have to talk tough and be crass to make criminals and plunderers tremble. Getting my point yet? Yes there are no death camps but why wait. I won’t. My family won’t. Won’t stay and watch until the slaughters under his regime starts.

    2. Make a research first before making a conclusion. If people will obey the laws of the land, martial law is not needed. Sometimes we are punished by our parents because we are sometimes hardheaded. Let us start to be obedient not only to our parents but to our newly elected President. Majority of us loves Duterte and we respected him so much because he deserves to be loved and respected. Have you noticed that after the miting de avance of all presidendital candidates, only Duterte’s supporters showed how they cared and obeyed him by picking all the trash on the ground and put them in trash bags. The ground was left clean as if no miting de avance was held. Did you do this to your candidate? I don’t think so because the ground where the miting de avance of the other candidates was held was full of trash everywhere. This reflects the differences of supporters of different candidates. We love and respect our Duterte.

    3. As a matter of fact, I am a Marial law baby. A Rappler article mentioned that most of BBM’s followers are aged 55 and up. I am not necessarily pro Marcos, but believe that the time for reconciliation is long overdue. My intent with this short note was not to be insensitive or to make light of your anxiety, but to try and explain that it may be an overreaction. If you read the news today of possible cabinet appointments, and sensible changes to an antiquated constitution…those things might assure you.

  6. I think Filipinos has seen the pattern what works and whats not, they compare the pre Martial Law and Post Martial Law. Parang madami pang good thing pre martial law ah. Filipinos are now voting the underdog because the established high ranking officials that sits in Malacanang or NCR are not delivering what they promise.

  7. The question more is about the voters. Duterte winning is an ethical shift that people are willing to compromise for the sake of peace and order and where fear is the platform of choice by a winning candidate.

    It almost feels like Filipinos went backwards and went against today social global landscape and more akin to a time when McCarthyism and other Cold War anti-communism propaganda was the way of the world.

    1. @shooter:

      Filipinos are just tired of “politics as usual”…they voted against the established political powers…

      They compared what the Aquinos
      did; and if change is a good thing. Let us all respect the Will of the Filipino people…they have spoken.

  8. The incidences in Maguindanao, terror by certain groups, hirap bumoto mga mamamayan, panay malfunctioning ang PCOS machine, we really need a President from the South who understand that the region is being downright neglected.

    And you’re right about cheating. A lot of youth are asking, they can understand Duterte winning but why is MDS kulelat and Mar 2nd? Why’s the trend like that?

    1. Sicl_Amore,

      The answer is simple: there is integrity in Philippine Politics as the legacy of chaos continues. The Philippines and its people are just too fucked up, even if DU30 wins, because the people are too divided and will not set aside personal interests for the good of the nation.

      It really is ‘Fucked [not Proud] To Be a Filipino.’

      Aeta

    2. [Correction]

      Sick_Amore,

      The answer is simple: there is no integrity in Philippine Politics as the legacy of chaos continues. The Philippines and its people are just too fucked up, even if DU30 wins, because the people are too divided and will not set aside personal interests for the good of the nation.

      It really is ‘Fucked [not Proud] To Be a Filipino.’

      Aeta

      1. You may be right but DU30 as Pres made the Filipinos still feel and think positive in spite of the Mar-smirk in the face cheating. Pag-iisipan mabuti ni Duterte ang kanyang cabinet members he said that last night in an interview, that’s the first in his plan. And even if Leni bring home the VP belt, and not resign (you know the yellows never keep their words), Duterte has his ways with women otherwise they won’t trust him. 😉 Leni should not waste the opportunity to get out of the LP claws. That’s the real Plan B for her actually should she be made to win. There’s always a good option with Digong 😀

        1. Sick_Amore,

          Thinking positive–along with praying and hoping–ain’t gonna get the Failippines nowhere. In spite of what you and I have against cheating, it has already happened and the red carpet will soon be laid out for Leni Rebredo, as she walks behind Duterte with a knife in her hand, to center stage.

          I doubt very seriously Rebredo would resign her VP post, with the Yellow (Chinese-loving) Tards there to protect her. You’re making a lot of wild “What Ifs” speculations and none of those will come true. The only thing you can bet on is the same bullshit “teleserye” drama, played by different actors this time, will be played on the big stage called the Failippines.

          Aeta

  9. Sick_Amore,

    Thinking positive–along with praying and hoping–ain’t gonna get the Failippines nowhere. In spite of what you and I have against cheating, it has already happened and the red carpet will soon be laid out for Leni Rebredo, as she walks behind Duterte with a knife in her hand, to center stage.

    I doubt very seriously Rebredo would resign her VP post, with the Yellow (Chinese-loving) Tards there to protect her. You’re making a lot of wild “What Ifs” speculations and none of those will come true. The only thing you can bet on is the same bullshit “teleserye” drama, played by different actors this time, will be played on the big stage called the Failippines.

    Aeta

    Aeta

    1. Thinking positive–along with praying and hoping–ain’t gonna get the Failippines nowhere.

      You’re right it won’t if that positive thinking is not inspired by the willingness to change. But at this case, people’s positive views are based on the need for change as well as their eagerness to fight the ones hindering that change. In that little way, they are beginning to see themselves as part of the system working for change. Filipinos won’t change overnight or in years but that there’s a willingness or a goal for that is at least showing us a good sign that people are becoming part of making our government work for all of us.

      You’re making a lot of wild “What Ifs” speculations and none of those will come true. The only thing you can bet on is the same bullshit “teleserye” drama, played by different actors this time, will be played on the big stage called the Failippines.

      It may or may not come true. It’s hard to bet on something unless the sour losers or selfish leaders stop looking after their own interest and join the new promising government in uniting the people and in working for progress.

      1. Sick_Amore,

        That’s just it. Our people are not willing to change but they expect their government to. We can have millions of positive-thinking Failippinos in the Failippines and abroad–who see themselves as an agent of change–but, if they still insist on operating on mindset of “individualism,” we’re never going to come together as one nation and effect the change that you’re talking about.

        What the Failipino people doesn’t need is another EDSA Revolution; instead, they need to revolutionize their arrogant and selfish mind, by abolishing their provincial (probinsya) way of seeing themselves and each other, and start speaking a single languagge that everyone can undertand–English instead of Tagalog–to minimize, and eventually eliminate, our “individualistic” way of life.

        Aeta

  10. To the cowards, change is a want; to the weak, change is a wish; but to the brave, change is a must. People who put change ahead of all things are those who make a difference!

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