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Battle of Insults


Argumentum ad Hominem (personal attacks) dominate the language of our political leaders in the country today. They have virtually transformed the motherland into an arena of tongue-lashing gladiators when they are not killing each other, and not a Hyde Park where people could ventilate grievances against the government, ailing economy and arrogance of power of public officials.

No amount of sugarcoated arguments can mitigate the acid insults flying between the Aquino and Arroyo camps. Luckily, Juan de la Cruz is quite conversant with the wiles of politicians. Our people have learned to validate with unvarnished indifference the unsettling rivalry of political leaders. The balm of letting the chips fall where they may keep our people’s sanity despite the maddening but volatile climate generated by warring political factions.

The masses are more concerned on how to earn enough to feed their families and live in relative peace. They try to avoid being disturbed by the unnerving battle of politicians. Against their best judgment however, people are drawn to the issues, which often than not are riddled with lies that only boost the interest of political parties not improve their sorrowful plight.

A case in point is Pres. Benigno S. Aquino 3rd whose approval rating in the latest Social Weather Station’s (SWS) survey has dropped because of his listless first year presidency. To throw off focus on his poor showing, with tongue-in-cheek PNoy tried to cash in on the news item that former Pres.

Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo allegedly admitted he is “her opposite.” Given the unpopularity of GMA nowadays, it is a bonus of magnitude to his leadership.

Expectedly, Noynoy went to town with that incredible announcement, which he personally hyped by publicly thanking her for the compliment.

His euphoria was pathetically short lived because the brouhaha that followed caused him a scandal of nightmarish proportion. He is in a turmoil of mistakenly assuming what he heard is true. Gloria has not lost her mind to admit such doleful stupidity. Her firm denial makes PNoy pitiable. No right thinking ex-president would deliberately admit her wretched performance – for what, to glamorize Noynoy at her expense? Absurd!

I choke at his gullibility of taking hook-line the idea that GMA ever said something that would make him a living legend. This will never happen when he is catalogued as a mediocre head-of-state based on his miserable showing last year. Add to that his disgusting onion skin to criticisms. He becomes exceedingly ballistic at his detractors, which is a no-no for a President to do.

Congressman JV Ejercito advised to “just treat every criticism hurled his way as constructive which he could use to further improve his governance of the country’s affairs.” He further said “if Aquino will continue doing nothing, then he will also reap nothing.”  Indeed, he who stands for nothing falls for nothing.

Rep. Rodel Batocabe pitched in saying “the President should refrain from being onion skin.” And “he should do his job and the people for themselves will see and feel the fruits of his effort.” The critics are mounting because Noynoy has become intolerant to criticisms firing back at anybody who gives him a piece of his/her mind.

He should learn to be president by accepting the citizenry’s well meaning reminders for him to do his level best.  If in spite of trying his everything he can still he fails they will understand and pat him in the back nevertheless for trying. What is so hard with that?  Everything is a question of attitude and a passionate desire to be father of the nation.

This column agrees with the former lady president of not stooping to his level, because he insists on being hostile and belligerent to the people who want him to succeed. Sporting around this pugnacity has magnified the people’s antipathy for him. No one loves a cocky head of state.

GMA’s undivided desire is not to dignify him with an insult or even answering him. She is not that naïve, nor is the public unsophisticated to believe she will deliberately cut her nose to spite her face praising PNoy at her expense. The thought alone does violence to common sense. In love, war and politics betrayal and assaults are indispensable ingredients for survival. With this in mind, how could anyone like Noynoy think she will admit he is better president than her?

Somewhere somebody must have goofed and printed that utter nonsense that has intoxicated PNoy with delusion of grandeur. In hugging the putrid logic attributed to GMA that by and large, makes him a present-day Sir Galahad in shining armor, Noynoy assumes his true character of an eager-beaver begging to be accepted as a deserving commander-in-chief. This aspiration is valid if he deserves the accolade. Anybody in his position would feel elated. But he must be inebriated to take the allegation as gospel truth.

He could only be propelled by emotional drive to jump on anything that makes him look, in his vulgar language, “pa pogi.”

Former Pres. Arroyo never said anything that will underscore her dismal governance just to accommodate Pres. Aquino for I know not what reason/s. Madam Arroyo must be gritting her teeth when he says with consuming passion that he will send her and her family along with GMA’s cohorts to jail, for corruption. Nobody believes she would admit he is more outstanding than she ever was in the nine years at the helm of power or steering the ship of state.

Frankly, there is no compelling logic to paint him great when he hasn’t even earned public approval for his first year incumbency. The claim about GMA commenting in his favor is so unnatural that it insults our intelligence. He has to be delusional to believe the report.

In view of Arroyo’s unpalatable reputation that lists her government as the administration most infested with venal officials committing corruption with impunity while the nation reels under dire economic straits, he (Pres. Aquino) believes his political stock is exceedingly luminous vis-à-vis than that of his immediate predecessor – GMA. Well, dreams are free. (Razor's Edge)

By Jose Mari Mercader

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