Duterte's nearly six months into power has magnified class divisions within Philippine society so much that an eruption of sorts is inevitable. Unlike in previous months when many observers had a hard time reading Duterte--now it seems that there is a very clear reading where Duterte wants his administration to go---he wants to replicate the governance model he so advocated for for many years in Davao on a national scale, and that is, pure warlordism.
Admit it--Duterte is a warlord. He frowns on democratic processes, he openly supports quick fixes in some of the most serious political, social and even economic problems of this country and he even sometimes indulge in anachronistic actions that muddle and confuse most, particularly the business community. Nothing wrong with being a warlord---analyse and study historical figures and you"ll find most of them are like Duterte; except that some of these warlords act like one based on a firm ideological and sound grounding.
Duterte is a pure nationalist---plain and simple. Yet, his nationalism is ill-defined and is predicated on soft ground that, it sometimes veer towards a more populist bent that does not fit conventional frameworks, let alone, clear distinctions between and among ideologies. By being so, Duterte's nationalism becomes just the mere ramblings of a seventy year old who grew up getting most of what he wants.
And since Duterte's men (those who are not that close to him, but only knew him when they were appointed into power) does not really know what's on his mind, no clear message or positioning is formed in the public's mind that further contributes to the deterioration of the people's trust for Duterte.
His open declaration of fielty with the Marcoses pictures him as a Marcos mini-me, a pup, and an overrated pseudo-dictator. Worse, when Duterte was seen sharing supper with Gloria Arroyo, his image is further muddled as someone who does not really know who to really worship---a false messiah with an overinflated ego or a former technocrat whose hunger for money just keeps getting better by the minute.
And just because Duterte does not advocate for any ideology except pushing for Federalism which, frankly, is not an ideology but a governance model, eventually, his place in History would probably be in the Hall of the Overthrown Powers.
Duterte's open support of two of this country's previous political pariahs---the Marcoses and the Arroyos while playing the Communists in their own guessing games, the Bangsamoros being lulled to accepting Federalism instead of the more acceptable Bangsamoro Republic and reviving the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) as a counterpose are all excellent political maneuvers except that there is simply no clear direction where Duterte wants these actions to lead him and the country to.
Literally, Duterte is everywhere. He is seen openly approving pro-people policies while the next day dining with oligarchs and palace carpet baggers. Duterte professes as a Socialist while advocating for a stronger one-man rule by telling the people that he wants to suspend the writ of habeas corpus.
This over contradiction has its reasons. Unfortunately, this strategy has expended its value. This playful over extension of political chameleon-ism has lived its usefulness. Unknown to Duterte and his men, there is no more misreading of Duterte's true intentions. His tendency, nay, logorrhea has given many not just a glimpse of what really is on his mind but has unraveled him as a frustrated Piped Piper who blows his pipe to lead some people to one direction of destruction.
Duterte suffers from logorrhea and this is evident by the way he repeats his hatred against drugs over and over again, in every event regardless of who is the audience and whatever occasion. He seems too obsessed with ridding the country with drugs while leaving everything else aside.
Now, with Robredo's action, the tempo and the complexion of the power game has changed. Robredo's resignation clearly sets the tenor of the events which will happen by next year.
The fight will now be those who are with Robredo against the Duterte-Marcos-Arroyo (DMA) clique. It is not entirely clear who among the active social groups right now are siding or are placing their bets on Robredo, but I presume that these are groups left outside of the political colambo so to speak, those who were clearly not close enough to Duterte. Throw in the kawali those whose economic interests were affected when Duterte came into power and those who are emotionally just disgusted by the way government is being run by a perceived amateur political braggadocio.
Here is the clincher---- are these forces sufficient to overthrow Duterte?
Yes---if Robredo plays her anti-Marcos card right. Those who are in the know and are close with the Marcoses and with Duterte are misreading the situation. Because of the mishandling of the Marcos burial (credit that to the brilliant Communication strategists whom Imee Marcos employed, who, I got word, are foreign consultants), there are now more people moving towards an ala-EDSA type of uprising motivated solely by their disdain of strong man rule.
If you ask me, this is clearly a serious threat to the stability and survival of this administration. Now, no amount of trolls or online bashing perpetuated by Duterte's minions are sufficient to counter the rising tide of anti-Duterte-ism. Blame the overzealous-ness of Duterte's loyalists. Blame the lack of sophistication of Duterte's supporters and blame the over the top responses of his paid online hacks for fuelling this rising hatred against the President.
Robredo, will, in the next few days and weeks, marshall her forces to her side as a political maneuver. There are now two camps fighting for the grand political prize---Robredo's and the DMA clique.
What is so sad about this is the fact that clearly, this over extension of the political drama that is the May presidential elections is not, and will not, be the solution to the country's problems. Both cliques are just fighting for power, and when we say that, we mean, the power to monopolize the 4 trillion peso budget full of infrastructure projects now being dangled upon the heads of hundreds of hungry and rapacious carpet baggers and oligarchs wanting to have their slice of the money pie.
Admit it---Robredo's group is not the ideal counterpose of the DMA clique. Robredo's camp is composed of political operators who once dipped their crooked fingers unto the public's coffers without shame. They are the worst of the lot because they try to show to the public that they are saints and are morally upright when everyone knew that they enriched themselves while in power.
The fact is----they not only enriched themselves with illicit wealth but also displayed arrogance while in power.
The choice is definitely clear AND simple----these two cliques represent none of the aspirations of the Filipino People. They are a despicable lot. These are sycophants, evil doers and immoral pseudo leaders who tried to show us their good side while silently robbing us of our hard-earned peso.
In the revolution that is to come---the people, the true Patriots of this beautiful land---must make a decisive choice.
When the decisive moment comes when all of these things boil over---let us rise up not in defense of the Duterte-Marcos-Arroyo clique, no. Let us rise up not to install Robredo and her gang to power, no.
Let us rise up and this time, launch an authentic EDSA revolution that would decisively end all of the contentious issues bedevilling our country today.
Let's be willing to re-calibrate our society and start from Day 1.
When this revolution does happen, let us:
1. Detain these people who were accused of graft and corruption--from all administrations. Charge them in court. Let us revive the death penalty. Mete these people the proper punishment they deserve. They deserve no second chances. Make an example of them now so that our children and our grandchildren will realize that there is simply no reward for robbing the people of their monies.
2. Establish a Council of Nationalists who will bond together just to create policies that would protect and pursue the people's agenda.
3. Hunt down the true drug lords, arrest them, show them in public and if found guilty, cut their heads off---figuratively and literally. Those who benefit from their evil deeds, hunt them down, and like their masters, mete them the most severe of punishments.
4. Tame these oligarchical parasites, those who salivate for the people's monies. If they refuse to do their patriotic duties and still decide to do things in the name of Capital, slap them with cases, confiscate their assets and either exile them to Babuyan Islands or incarcerate them. Those oligarchs who have caused irreparable damage to the lives of the people with their exorbitant rates, arrest them, charge them in court and if found guilty, let them suffer the penalties as befitting these demon sloths.
5. Summon the patriotic elements of this country and make them serve the Motherland. Give them enough for their families to survive the rigors of life, but none of the powers that would tempt them to enrich themselves while in office.