The trouble with Filipinos is they are shortsighted. They are focused on instant gratification and consistently fail to see the long view. This is evident today seeing all major political camps, the Yellowtards, the Dutertards, and the commies calling for measures that can only be implemented outside of the Constitution.
The Yellowtards, of course, mount their traditional push towards their tired old “people power” uprising thing which involves middle class folk gathering in hordes on a street in Imperial Manila clutching rosaries while waving hands shaped in an “L”. The commies, like the Yellowtards also continue their Cold War era “armed revolution” of the “proletariat” also massing on streets sporting their tubaos, waving their fists in the air and chanting their overused anti “US Imperialist” slogans. Meanwhile, their terrorist comrades in the New People’s Army (NPA) roam the Philippines’ jungles terrorising farmers and killing Filipino soldiers.
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Now we are seeing a new third ocho-ocho camp doing the same song-and-dance. A faction of the Dutertard bloc is now calling for Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to declare a “revolutionary government”.
Suffice to say, it seems the biggest noisiest blocs of Filipino “activists” are all advocating quck-and-dirty instantly-gratifying approaches to instigating change. That says something about the character of the Philippines’ cliques of politically-passionate “influencers”. Even taken together, they collectively fail to provide a true vision that encompasses a true strategic long-term horizon. Like much else in Philippine society, Filipino activism suffers from the infamous pwede na yan mentality. Just like the jeepneys which originally came into being as a short-term fix to a serious problem, these “solutions” advocated by the Philippines’ top cliques of “activists” are turning what are supposed to be temporary political fixes into permanently-recurring solutions.
Even more interesting is how this third one — those calling for Duterte to form a “revolutionary government” — is evidently the most ludicrous advocacy among the three. Whilst the Yellowtards’ “people power” circus and the “dictatorship of the proletariat” being fought for by the commies are “revolutions” being fought against the incumbent, that of the Dutertards’ “#RevGov” faction are actually calling on the incumbent to declare his own government a “revolutionary” one. To regard this as an oxymoron is being kind. It flat out just does not make any sense.
The minute Duterte makes such a declaration is the minute his “vice president” Leni Robredo gains a legitimate claim to the Philippine presidency. This is because a “revolutionary government” is one that necessarily lies outside the frame of the 1987 Yellowtard Constitution that currently lends Duterte’s government its legitimacy. And under that Yellowtard Constitution, Robredo becomes president when the incumbent president opts to leave his office to go “revolutionary”.
(Note that the idea in the above paragraph is premised on the hypothetical scenario that Robredo actually is the Philippines’ legitimate VP.)
It’s like half of a Mexican standoff. The #RevGov Dutertards have their fingers on the #RevGov trigger while the Yellowtards have their fingers on the Leni trigger. The commies for their part are more likely to shoot both blocs in the back given the chance and do away with the Yellowtard Constitution altogether.
Those of us watching this quaint standoff armed with bags of popcorn can only laugh. Underneath these circuses lies a more fearsome common denominator — the vast foundation of Filipino cultural dysfunction that is likely to render any solution advocated by these three clownish movements inutile. Just about every political ideological edifice stood up on this quicksand-like socio-cultural foundation sinks and is eventually swallowed up in a society that, to begin with, is averse to self-improvement.
Indeed, a key feature of this muck of cultural dysfunction that these movements hope to build upon is an entire people’s inability to collectively envision goals and run toward them over a long-term timeframe. That was just a long-winded way of saying Filipinos lack enough sense of nationalism to make any “revolution” work for them, much less the half-witted ones being proposed by these three blocs of “activists”.
The foundation of nationalism must first be established before political solutions can even be considered. Without this binding sense of nationalism amongst Filipinos (one that goes beyond “solidarity” in winning international beauty pageants and basketball games), Philippine politics will continue to sustain the schizophrenic character it currently exhibits. My colleague Paul Farol’s recent quip encapsulates all this…
The people are insane, changing the form of government is like changing mental asylums.
Indeed, that is the truth about themselves Filipinos will ultimately need to confront. Progress requires time and consistency of vision. Only patience, perseverance, and quiet achievement — not shrill adolescent emotionalism — will deliver for the Filipino in the long run.
benign0 is the Webmaster of GetRealPhilippines.com.