THE President has shown a good grasp of the Filipino's behavioral makeup, an astuteness no one thought he possessed until he took his oath of office. He viewed those wang-wangs as more than just traffic alarm systems, that in fact they were vanity devices, compelling the attention of one and all to the owner's sense of self-importance. Bragging gadgets, that's what they were! - he seemed to say. And he was right.

Not only was he firm about prohibiting it, he set the example himself. And to make it amply clear to all, he gave the law enforcers their marching orders, affirming in no uncertain terms that everyone would be bound including himself, the Commander-in-Chief.

Updates on President Benigno Aquino III's presidency

True enough, sirens stopped shrieking, blinkers blanked out, and wang-wangs keened no more. Why, even the Strong Man of Cagayan de Oro got the message and made a big show of having siren and blinkers removed from his vehicle-thereby revealing that he had been violating the law all along to trumpet his Royal Presence. Now people are watching-and taking bets!-on whether he will at last obey rules or signs like "NO SMOKING IN PUBLIC PLACES."

Next, let's hope P-Noy trains his sights on the "privatization" of government and its services. Government operations are privatized and used for personal purposes by traditional politicians, or trapos. He should stop government from being used for year-round campaigning and credit-grabbing. The practice of installing vanity billboards and streamers on public works project sites is improper, dishonest, and wasteful.

Then there's this local practice of deploying city government personnel and facilities for a time for the narrow purpose of accompanying the mayor as he hands out packages and supervises services in the field. The whole idea is to project an unmistakable message: the mayor cares, and no one else cares, so Hail and Long Live the Mayor!

After the outing, a pall of gloom once more descends upon the hapless barangay, there to await the next coming of the Messiah from City Hall. People-to-People-Program it's called, whatever that means. Actually it's just "People at City Hall Meeting People outside City Hall."

In any case, the business of the city government is to minister to all of the people all of the time. Wholesale, not retail! Retail is the job of a barangay government, ministering to the neighborhoods. Let's see if P-Noy can stop this corrupt local practice.