Thursday, November 02, 2006
There’s a brewing typhoon near the Pasig River and it will hit the Palace anytime soon. The in-fighting between Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s cabinet members has been the subject of public speculations these past few days. Triggered by a malicious remark from the eternal malice Raul Gonzales; three prominent officials namely, Avelino Cruz, Eduardo Ermita, and Mike Defensor have been laundering their political as well as personal hatred with one another. Gonzales made a comment that a certain law firm is celebrating after the monumental 8-7 Supreme Court decision junking the administration-initiated People’s Initiative. Afterwards, Cruz made a public statement that Plan B also known as ConAss will also be jettisoned if the Lower House continues to ignore the Senate. Cruz is a founding member of ‘The Firm.’ Analysts and gossipmongers believe that the triumphant law firm Gonzales is insinuating and ‘The Firm’ are one and the same. If there are some truth to this buzz, how would ‘The Firm’s’ most important client reacts? Unless you live under the proverbial rock of apathy, the important client goes by the name Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
The All Saint’s Day editorial of The Philippine Daily Inquirer has an interesting perspective as it tries to make light of this squabble. It believes that this is all about power. The Lakas-CMD (Ermita), the LP-Atienza wing (Defensor), and the Kampi (Arroyo) have been jostling for the prime minister position in case the parliamentary system will flourish. How? Constitutional Assembly because People’s Initiative is now out of the question. No. The Supreme Court will not reverse itself. Not now when everyone except the greedy and the power-hungry are admiring its newfound independence. Going back to the quarreling clowns, I was surprised that Ermita was defending the imaginary unity of the administration. Of all the people, why him? He is not exactly the poster boy for unity and transparency. It’s pretty obvious that he dislikes Little Mike. Do I have to enumerate it again? Exhibit A: the Sam Macariola incident. Exhibit B: the Jovito Palparan appointment. Exhibit C: the tentative administration senatorial slate. Three of the most memorable I-declare-I-deny routine of the Ermita-Defensor comedy side show. Raul Gonzales? Let’s not even talk about him. How many people has the Justice Secretary antagonized since he assumed the cabinet position?
On the other hand, Avelino Cruz is rather different. In fairness to him, he kept his silence while the rest of Arroyo’s underlings were campaigning for People’s Initiative. I’m not even sure if he made regular public declarations supporting the passage of the Anti-Terrorism Bill. But now, he’s on the spotlight. Why is he opposing the ‘great idea of Charter Change?’ I have no idea. Will he receive the pink slip once Queen Midget returns from the Middle Kingdom? No. Jojo Robles of the administration-friendly broadsheet Manila Standard Today thinks the guy is harebrained. Robles deems it smart if Cruz would resign before he gets fired. I bet that the Defense Secretary would retain his job without having to answer the question deal or no deal from his boss. Why? Because he’s from ‘The Firm.’ It’s the same group that ironed out all the legal kinks the Palace illegal resident went through. Plus, you would not want the boys from LTA Building blowing whistles on what really happened during the 2004 Presidential Elections. Cruz is just being exploited as a scapegoat. If he’s going to be fired then why is Raul Gonzales flying to Hong Kong this week where Gloria will be vacationing? I’m just wondering. Either they both have an affinity for Mickey Mouse or he will be berated for being too talkative.
So who will win the fight? Who cares as long as Gloria looses. If this bickering contributes to Arroyo’s hasty downfall then I’m all for it.
Note to the opposition: don’t meddle in the administration internal disputes. Let them self-destruct like the Grand Old Party. After the FEMA debacle and the Foley Scandal, the Republicans are trailing in the midterm elections.