Thursday, June 10, 2010
Honestly, I never thought I'd be writing here again: I didn't think I had it in me anymore. Then Jessie May's Plurk pointed me to Lourd de Veyra's piece on Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. I read it and the accruing comments, and lo and behold, I was writing a post mortem on the woman's presidency. I didn't quite know what I was doing: I was just responding to comments best summed up as "Stop hating Gloria. She got something done." I only realized that I was writing a blog-sized entry when I'd finished.
Who'd have thought I'd be inspired by a better paid writer in his late thirties? I owe that man a beer.
I don't doubt Arroyo got something done: her competence was never in question. I don't question Johnny "Rambo" Enrile's ability to lead, or for that matter, Manny Villar's. The reasons why I wouldn't vote for any of them have nothing to do with their qualifications... just their ethics.
The cancer that ate away at Arroyo's presidency comprised issues of legitimacy and trustworthiness (or her seeming lack thereof). She wanted the presidency so badly that she went back on her word and ran in '04 despite having publicly declared that she wouldn’t. Regardless of your motives, especially in the political climate of the time, doing that just doesn’t look good.
We could have lived with it, but she compounded this by cheating. There’s nothing else to call “Hello Garci.” We mostly went along with it, likely because--
1) some of us were just relieved FPJ didn’t get to become president (better the devil we know than the devil we don’t); and
2) some of us were so exhausted from the disappointment of EDSA II and EDSA III. “We’ve got a president,” we rationalized, “Why rock the boat now?”
The effect was that she wound up focusing more on her image and her rightfully outraged critics than on her job. Her husband aka “Dreamboat/Shipwreck” didn’t help (Jose Velarde, Meet Jose Pidal).
She probably meant well, and the decisions she made leading up to her “reelection” were probably calculated risks. The problem remained though, and would haunt her popularity ratings until her term ended. Could anyone have really fully trusted Gloria with 6 more years of collecting his taxes and affecting his life? Especially when she’s proven that she will cheat, lie, ramrod unsavory deals in the name of “It’s for your own good, Pilipinas?” –when even that is questionable?
I’m done getting mad at her: it won’t bring my tax money or my ex girlfriend back. I’m just cautiously relieved she’ll finally go. There's time enough to rip new holes in Noynoy if and when he begins to screw up.
This is lifted and modified from my response to comments in Lourd De Veyra's Spot.ph blog entry "We Will Miss You, O Great Leader."