”No law shall be passed abridging the freedom of speech, of expression…” (Phil. Constitution, Bill of Rights, Section 4). Although unwritten and unsaid, the freedom of speech may not but be premised on objective truth or anchored on ground reality – not unless the speaker is honestly mistaken, probably deceived or simply led astray by a strong emotion or intense impression. Whatever be the case, all written and spoken words although constitutionally vested with the freedom of speech, should meet the minimum of credibility. Otherwise, the spoken word might not even register at all, or could be taken simply as a good joke.
It has been recently reported by certain media outlets that someone newly appointed as an intrepid Malacanang spokesperson rather serenely and bravely gave the enviable attribution that the still reigning Chief-in-Command is “the best president the country has ever had.” Today the least, that was a veritable mouthful – if taken attentively and seriously. The pronouncement was not only absolute whereas it covered the entire history of the Philippines. The statement was also superlative in text and context. It could not be more definitive and categorical. In fact, one could not even be certain if the subject-object of the unconditional and unadulterated compliment took this with sincere delight and serious acquiescence.
There is the long litany of well noted faux pas by exactly the same character of adulation – starting with “I shall not run for the Presidency” to “I am sorry”, not to mention the famous golf played in an Asian country, the subsequent interesting advisory “Moderate their greed”, the one-million-peso dinner held in Northern America. This is not to mention the conferment of one medal after another for incarnate corruption in government. This is neither to mention the regular records of negative approval ratings gathered by different reputable survey organizations.
Furthermore, there is poverty and want in the Country – notwithstanding the drama of the “Bankang Papel” plus the vision of “Super Regions” plus the promises of development and progress unlimited. There is resentment and dissent from many sectors of society whereas the supposedly Numero Uno public servant is in fact the over-all public master who thus had the brilliant idea of even having Filipina “Supermaids” as export materials. As some kind of a crowning glory, it is during the already too long tenure of this administration that the Legislature and the Judiciary have become damaged institutions - while the Ampatuans became an institutional shame.
But lo and behold the assessment of the Malacanang head tenant: “the best president the country ever had.” Really?
January 11, 2010