I write better when I smoke. Don’t ask me to reduce it to a science.

It’s just a dance

Whenever a President starts talking about amending the constitution, everyone starts foaming at the mouth before the process even starts. The opposition automatically paints the initiative as an attempt to install the President as dictator for life or something. It happened this way under Ramos, it happened this way under Estrada, and now, it looks all set to happen this way again – for the second time – under Arroyo. Which begs the question, when are we ever really going to get around to fixing the damned thing?

Maybe the problem is that whenever people talk about charter change, they always present huge sweeping packages like shifts in the form of government and the institution of federalism, and very truncated time lines. I mean, hello. Whenever you talk about shit like that, you ought to expect resistance because there is no way in hell the ordinary Filipino will understand enough about those concepts in the six or so months that is the usual timetable set by the proponents. Come ON. You try to push that through, in as little time as you’re trying to do it, the perception of railroading becomes inevitable. And once people think you’re trying to pull a fast one, well hell, that’s the start of the end for your initiative.

So maybe, we should start small. A politically neutral tweak here, and a tweak there, Get people used to the idea of the constitution as a dynamic document. And in the meantime, launch the debate on things like federalism – give the idea time to percolate in the public consciousness. Then, when something like a consensus is reached, launch the amendment initiative.

As it is, this federalism move isn’t popular. First off, we know that those bandits in the ARMM support federalism because it brings secession that much closer – and how popular is that? Sure several senators support it too, but that’s obviously a political decision – perhaps motivated by the anticipation of becoming petty kings within their own federal states. I don’t see it as a reflection of public sentiment at all. Of course, public sentiment is a notoriously ignorant and gullible animal, so we must take extra care to ensure that when people vote on this measure, it’s not simply because of who endorsed it.

The way I see it, this debate on federalism – if we’re sincere about it – can easily outlive the Arroyo presidency before any clear and intelligent consensus is reached. We can’t get to that consensus simply because the President and her merry-band of sycophants say that it’ll be good for the country.


Filed under: politics, ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

RSS Short Puffs

  • Re-election 31 December 2008
    Maceda sez Erap consulted Narvasa and others, and they told him that the 1987 Consti prohibits only the INCUMBENT prez from re-election. Former prezzies, by their definition, face no such prohibition. But in the same breath, Maceda also sez that they know an Erap candidacy will be the subject of a disqual case – but […]
  • Escalation 30 December 2008
    I still think the Pangandaman’s shouldn’t have retaliated even if dela Paz threw the first punch. But is anyone really surprised at the escalation in the story-telling on both sides? BTW, I think we can dispense with the age angle nao.
  • Etiquette 29 December 2008
    Unless you’re spoiling for a fight, assume that the writer has some basis for what she writes. Don’t make like a lawyer and ask retarded questions in an attempt to lay the foundation for whatever point you’re trying to make.
  • Anne 28 December 2008
    Anne Curtis won best actress? Against the likes of Marian Rivera and Diana Zubiri? So what?
  • Baler 28 December 2008
    Watching Baler tomorrow. Will it be worth it?

Locations of visitors to this page

Archived Maps:
Politics & Government - Top Blogs Philippines

My site is worth $119.
How much is yours worth?

%d bloggers like this: