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Monday, March 4, 2024

Thank God, the election is over!

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“I’m relieved.”

What many of our people do not know is they really have to thank God that the election is over. I say this with a sigh of relief for had the election been postponed a little longer, maybe the presidential candidate of the opposition could have finally ignited a bloody civil war.

Though the election last May 9 was generally peaceful, it was attributed to the firm hand adopted by the President Duterte. By that, this column was inclined to believe the government will not hesitate to take all measures to maintain a clean and orderly election.

Never has there been a presidential campaign so hotly contested. The division among voters transcended beyond traditional party lines. Many families were divided due to political agitation, by their age, by their religious affiliation and by their experience of the so-called “horrors” of martial law, while many looked positively at the achievements of the Marcos administration based on their personal or vicarious experience, often through propaganda or religious affiliation.

The BBM-Robredo presidential election took a totally different route. The tone of the campaign became so personal that the tenor waged by the opposition was meant to exact vengeance. Many simply could not get what the opposition and their followers wanted, especially the violent-prone communists and student activists whose bastion came mostly from the universities, when in reality they were attacking the policies of a long dead president.

This approach of the opposition visibly puzzled many. The supposed voters could not be convinced to vote for Robredo knowing that nothing of her accusations could be attributed as the fault of the son. What was grotesque about their propaganda, which the communists and people closely identified with the church, is they did everything to prevent BBM from taking his seat as elected vice-president in 2016.

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The whole campaign became so preposterous, for often people got mad instead of being enlightened by their sonorous speeches about the past with the many regretting listening to the opposition’s tirade. Many were disgusted saying they could not be affected such that martial law was imposed and many of those who rant against it have yet to see the world they live in.

It was such a pathetic approach for them to blame the sins of the father knowing that issues are not transmissible like a disease that one must avoid to prevent infection. Blaming the son is essentially against their doctrine. Most of the people feel they are being denuded by propaganda.

The people failed to take the cue that the clerics and their supporters are not only out to make propaganda but to politicize them. The purpose is far beyond the objective of convincing them to elicit their commitment of hatred. Politicization is brainwashing. The voters converted to politically support them are reduced to unthinking persons. One becomes an automaton because he acts imprudently as his handler would wish him to do.

Reason and rationalization are out of the question. Politization compels people to act because they are indoctrinated to believe in a cause. It is the cause that substitutes their fear, and they become like wild animals blindly defending their cause as their faith. It is this belief that reduces them to automatons, and is precisely what the clerics and the Catholic hierarchy wanted to happen, a mentally locked fanatic.

Jelly mind is what the communists and their sympathizers from the elite and the middle class from the universities wanted. People who oppose their view are either branded as reactionary, fascist, or espousing dictatorial tendencies. But never would they admit that it is exactly what they are doing. The overwhelming lead tells the opposition not to cross the red line; that the era of US-sponsored people power is over.

Of course, there are valid political issues that could have been raised either by the camp of BBM or by the opposition themselves. But the communists and the clerics simply avoided them for fear that those issues would equally affect them. A good case is the exemption of the Church from taxation, the deregulation of tuition fees, and the open participation of the church in many purely secular activities of the State.

The issue of church interference should have been raised by the opposition against BBM, but they have chosen to be hypocrites as ever. For instance, the administration under BBM could only restore the provision of the 1973 constitution. The Catholic Church is the single institution in this country that owns vast tracts of land. It does not pay tax on the various schools and universities they operate. On top of it, the tuition fees they charge are not subject to regulation.

Aside from this, the Church is exempt from the payment of real property tax, from the various businesses and properties they own and operate usually in the name of charitable work, from customs duties on certain items, from gifts and legacies they received, and from whatever donation, legacies, fees for their incorporation and payment of taxes received from NGOs such they many now act as fronts of foreign intelligence agencies doing work to subvert our own government.

The Church does not only have say on who should be appointed as our secretary of education. For this, they do not only have a say on the textbooks that should be prescribed, the subjects to be offered, and the erection of monuments who should be venerated as heroes.

The contradiction in Philippine society, as the Marxist would like to put it, became so intense because the Church and some bigoted clerics equate the candidacy of BBM as being anti-Catholic. This contradiction was heightened after the INC openly affirmed their support for Marcos. The unusual thing about this is that the INC publicly announced their support for BBM long before the election.

When the opposition felt they would not win the election, some adventurers wanted to implement Plan “B.” They wanted to disrupt the constitutional processes. They were almost tempted that they created a battalion of fanatics and desperados, and supported by communists who were just ready and willing to ride on the crest of the expected tumult. Fortunately, the Armed Forces remained behind President Duterte.

Some quarters expected this to happen as their last-minute attempt to thwart the victory of BBM. A minor confusion could derail and even delay the result of the election because that could cast doubt on BBM’s victory.

The ironic twist is that CPP and the NDF and its front organizations endorsed Robredo. That was interpreted by many political analysts as goaded by US self-interest, which means the US is now in command of the ideological line of this handful of stragglers. From fierce anti-imperialists, they became clowns to indirectly support the US in its life and death struggle against China.

By itself, the CPP and the NDF that were once served as the embodiment of anti-clerico-fascism in this country, the neolithic leadership of the entire CPP and NDF have to swallow all their accusations against the old communist party of the Lavas of revisionism. Today, the CPP and all its entire apparatus of alleged revolutionaries have become the new coolies of US imperialism.

rpkapunan@gmail.com

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