Tell it to SunStar: The allurement of charter change (Part 1)

Tell it to SunStar.
Tell it to SunStar.SunStar file photo

Ah, Cha-cha (Charter change), how alluring art thou (and maddening), for politicians to catch and get thee -- by all means, by all odds and by hook or by crook. They started the adventure this time by gathering, rather, buying “signatures” for their “people’s initiative” (“PI”) as a matter of compliance -- only to dupe the poor and gullible, and to sell the country, ultimately.

There appears to be a concerted effort among our legislators in both houses of Congress to railroad everything within their reach and power -- towards “charter change.” Their first moves are wrong, bad and deceptive. So what right and good things can we expect to happen next, dear countrymen? Nothing.

If attracting foreign investors is the main reason to amend the present Constitution, its so-called “restrictive” economic provisions in particular, then there is no need to amend it because there are actually enough free and open but sane provisions and “charisma” in its gist and substance (safeguarded, prudent and nationalistic) to do the attracting -- unless our officials have the plan and flubs (mindless enough) to prostitute the nation for fun -- or “target” (unwittingly) to bargain the nation’s own soul.

“It’s More Fun in the Philippines.” No, sirs, move on from ugly past. Our slogan now to attract foreign tourists is “Love the Philippines.”

There’s no problem with the government wanting to lure foreign businessmen, but, for Christ’s sake, why resort to harlotry of the motherland? Entice no maniacs, but only those who are pure investors and who have clean intentions to do decent business in the country, not (for example) the carnivorous, voracious, malicious, shrewd Chinese.

Do we need more “Pogos” (imported from China) and gambling hubs in our land and shores, and assorted other immoral, injurious, calamitous, deleterious, hellish industries? Progress is not everything money or mammon.

To our economic managers: May I ask, with due respect, are those the kinds of businesses or investments you have in mind that would help uplift our economy and usher us to progress? Lunacy. Instead of abolishing Pagcor and closing Pogo and lotto operations and every other gambling den (legal and illegal, onsite and online) in the country, alas, they want more of the same to beset and devastate countless more lives, souls and families -- and the nation as a whole.

No, Mr. Senate President, we will NOT “waste foreign investment pledges” if we do right -- if the investments are right. In fact, we will make the pledges materialize as we take the right path and keep ourselves on track. Try doing it wrongly and see who you’ll be doing it for.

No, Mr. House Speaker, in your initiative aided by “PI” to amend the Constitution, it is not the people as I quoted you, “their voices that will be heard and interests safeguarded as we embark on this journey towards a brighter and more prosperous future for the Philippines.”

Nice-sounding, but antithetical and empty. Your “assurance,” by the very acts and spirit of Congress, has nothing to do with the voices and interests of Filipinos and the “journey” is clearly towards the rummaging and ravishing of the motherland (by wholesale) -- in the service and for benefit of politicians -- or of wily, crooked politicians.

Dear President Bongbong Marcos, know the “influentials” inside and outside Malacañang Palace who give you counsels. Go deeper than their spoken words when they tell you something -- to avoid going wrong. Discern where they are coming from (really) -- whether from wisdom or craziness, or from foolish, selfish motives or mad, narcissistic political/personal aspirations. Pray.

There are so many changes that we need to do with and effect on ourselves as citizens, especially our leaders, to make the country attractive and inviting to foreigners and foreign investments. But changing or amending our Constitution is not one of them, most definitely. All are just a waste of time and energy, focus and government resources -- an exercise in futility and inanity. Political vaudeville.

Ah Cha-cha, so cunning indeed is your allurement. “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil,” oh Lord!

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