This has nothing to do with Philippine tourism, neither with Filipina beauties nor with Philippine Basketball. This has something to do with someone holding the highest public office in the land, living in a sterilized palace and invoking the tired and tiring mantra of “Matuwid na Daan.” This is something intimately relevant to the now much publicized – shameful and detestable – “Pork Barrel” system at the command of none other than the Chief-in-Command himself.
Two billion seven hundred ninety one million pesos – Wow! Such an amount it not only difficult to count but also hard to imagine! They are all people’s money – millions of young and old, ignorant and educated, employed and unemployed Filipinos. Yet such a formidable amount of money is all at the direct and immediate disposal of but one man. Appalling – considering that even the poorest of the poor pay indirect taxes to the government! Disgusting – knowing that multi-million Filipinos are suffering from hunger and destitution! Revolting – thinking that such a huge amount of money is at the immediate disposal of but on individual in the entire of whole country!
And to know that no less than a total of five hundred million pesos thereof is specifically earmarked for the mysterious “intelligence fund” which is the most tempting icing in the cake – so to speak. Why? The practice is that the citizens from whom the money comes, are all kept in the dark what amount intelligently went to whom, what for, and when. The truth is that the “intelligence fund” in effect means “secret”! This is saying nothing about the unintelligent agents and officials in government who are standing experts in making even notorious criminal cases unresolved until these are altogether forgotten for continuous emergences of other heinous crimes, one after another – such as massacres, executions, bombings included.
With such a “Wow!” annual “pork budget,” who would dare say with sincerity and in truth that the Office of the President is not a delightful position to hold and keep, not a rewarding function to fulfill and enjoy, not a profitable occupation to have and live by? Meantime: Millions of Filipinos are wanting in food, clothing, and shelter. Millions of Filipinos as well are made export commodities, leaving their families and homes behind in order to earn a living and to send their dollar remittances to the government. And there is this but one government office with such an unconscionable and scandalous “Pork Barrel” – abundantly oozing with delectable fat!
The Office of the President means a lot of sweat and big toil! It is equated with huge sacrifice, immolation and self-oblation. It is all work and no play!