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San Juan Gossip Mills Outlet

A veritable fanatic of the Internet. His avocation is teaching while his main vocation is practicing the much maligned law profession. Currently teaching Constitutional Law at the FEU Institute of Law and a guest lecturer at the De La Salle University teaching "Freedom and Regulation in Cyberspace" in the Graduate Program of the Department of Communication. He is married to his beautiful Ateneo law school classmate and is blessed with a daughter and a son.

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Location: San Juan, Metro Manila, Philippines

Friday, August 19, 2005

Hearts and Minds

It is grating to the ears to hear Rep. Francis Escudero decry the need for the President to face the impeachment court to restore her credibility. It is also insulting to hear Rep. Ronaldo B. Zamora speak of GMA finding redemption only in an impeachment proceeding.

They are both grating and insulting because the statements are both patronizing and false. Let us face it. Reps. Escudero and Zamora want GMA to face the impeachment court because they intend to remove her from the throne of grace. And the truth with the president is that she does not want the impeachment proceeding to continue because of new whistleblowers or the discovery of new and damning evidences of her culpable behavior, not to mention that impeachment is a huge distraction to her governance.

If we know and the opposition knows that the pro-GMA solons do not want GMA to face an impeachment court, then by all means, let the opposition tell it as it is. The opposition will not convert any fence sitter when it says that the impeachment proceeding is good for GMA to restore her credibility. The opposition ought to accuse the president of being scared with the amended impeachment complaint which is manifested by the continuous delays foisted by the administration solons. Even a basic and simple request of drafting a letter to the CIDG must first be debated the whole hour and if that is not foot dragging, I do not know what is.

The opposition must have a two-pronged strategy: the short-term strategy of successfully impeaching the president or the long-term strategy of tainting GMA’s place in history and among the pantheon of Philippine presidents.

The short-term strategy is to move the impeachment out of the House and into the Senate. But the short term strategy will not work as long as you have juvenile comments coming from juvenile dwarves like Rep. Joel Villanueva, Rep. Darlene Antonino-Custodio, and Rep. Allan Peter Cayetano. As long as they are the faces behind the patronizing Rep. Escudero, the public will not stake their future on these young but vacuous solons. Youth may be an asset but absent an intellectual framework, it is a liability.

The long-term strategy is to recognize the imminence of defeat in the House but with the end view of memorializing the cheating, lying and stealing legacy of GMA. What that means is the opposition solons must expect and be willing to lose the battle at every turn in the House for obvious reasons but in the face of defeat, the opposition will perpetuate the arrogance and highhanded conduct of the administration. What they should keep in mind is that the opposition may be willing to lose the battle but eventually win the war. And with a looming EVAT crisis in the horizon, the Filipino people will not be as forgiving on GMA as the American people were with Clinton after leaving his impeached presidency with a sunshine economy.

The war over the hearts and minds of our countrymen is underway. And as long as the opposition continues to act like wimps or spoiled brats, either impeaching the president or staining the president’s historical legacy will seem to be a bridge too far.

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