It is Done.

June 8, 2007 at 3:43 pm | Posted in Akbayan | 3 Comments

How is the world going to end?

Some say it will be in a loud explosion, the stars colliding in grand fashion, atoms pushing in the same direction, the very essence of life collapsing unto itself.

Some say it will be in the form of an icy winter, mercury dropping, hell’s fury in a creeping sheet of cold, death by freezing, in silence and in the thick of night.

And then there are those who believe, like me, that the world will end any which way it wants to die, but what we will take are not the images of fireballs hurling down from the sky or crystal ice enveloping us from the feet up, but the nasty, annoying voices of the people we would be unfortunate to die with. Their screaming, dying pleas for help are the last we will remember of this plane of existence before we move on to the recycle bin.

In a lot of ways it was the end of the world yesterday. But there were no fireballs, no ice sheets, no screaming in terror and fear. In fact there were none but distinguished men and women with the elegance of their expensive couture and the scent of their dollar-denominated colognes about them, all expense-paid courtesy of the Filipino taxpayer, of course, by the power of what passes for their mandates filtered through a shotgun-bullet riddled electoral system.

The surprising thing was, there were not a lot of them. Some of them had mysteriously vanished, or were probably cashing in on some juicy last-minute contract left uncollected from before the onset of the election period.

Or mostly, they were just plain disinterested in what was on the table. When there is nothing to gain from legislation except actual, tangible public service the quorum bell can ring till hell or high water and the warm bodies won’t show up. Which is very typical for a place where warm blooded people are as rare as rubies in a heap of cow dung. You would have better luck nailing jell-o to a tree, as they say, than appeal to the conscience of these people.

Five minutes, or even less, and Marcos victims could have been one step closer to attaining some semblance of reparation and justice had the compensation bill been enacted into law. But apparently some bloodhounds in the Executive’s security cluster were too afraid of the ramifications of victims of extra-judicial killings getting the same idea from Marcos victims.

Then there was the UP Charter bill, which would have exempted teachers form UP from the salary standardization law,and allowed for greater democracy in the selection of the faculty and student regents through direct voting.

Both bills only needed to be ratified. Meaning a viva voce vote, since this had already gone through the bicameral conference and the ratification is more or less a formality.

Then there was the cheaper medicines bill, one that is most needed by just about anybody who knows how much it costs every time one lines up at a drug store. A third reading passage would have allowed a bicameral committee to convene immediately to reconcile the House and Senate versions and have it ready for ratification.

But the House would not have any of it. It would rather spend on a bogus centennial than do actual work. It would rather celebrate a dubious hundred years of existence, when it couldn’t even muster a quorum necessary to conduct business.

It really felt like the end of the world yesterday. But no fireballs, no ice sheets, no hell freezing over. Yet something died in us who had put our entire weight behind these measures. It is not over, of course. The bills can be refiled in the 14th Congress, but the process is just too tedious to have the moment pass by when it could have been acted upon now.

But hope springs eternal. So maybe the world didn’t end yesterday, after all. Because if yesterday were truly the end of the world, then there should have been an entire collective of vultures and thieves dropping dead before the public’s very eye. And the public should be thankful for being spared the fate of dying along with people whom I know deserve it more than we do.



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  1. just an opinion. ever thought of akbayan consolidating its strengths in a certain local area. i mean running for barangay captain at first then maybe city councilor next then soon city mayor. its possible. If akbayan can find a suitable constituency that would be very amiable to its core beliefs it could serve as akbayan’s “experiment” in local governance giving credibility to your cause. I was just thingking about it since it obviously in the LGUs that Trapos dominate. Why not challenge them in their very own balliwicks starting with places with weakest elite control.

  2. actually we do have those. while akbayan may be most prominent as a party-list, it is registered as a national political party and we do have members who run for local elective posts, but as we all know it’s still a trapo dominated world out there, but there are victories where we find them. thanks for the encouragement. 🙂

  3. kababasa ko lang ng dyaryo. mukhang may balak palang bigayn na lang ng tatlong representante ang bawat partylist na sumobra sa 2% na requirement.

    isang tanong lang po, ano pong pinakamataas na elective position na po ang napanalo ng isang Akbayan member sa LGU? sino po at saang probinsya?

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