By Mortz C. Ortigoza
To those who exhort morality on the propensity of congressmen and senators to identify projects that should be the work of the executive department, that pontification is easier said than done if you’re not the president of the Philippines.
Before I discuss the rai·son d'ê·tre of this malpractice, here is a briefer to the uninitiated why the big fuzz on this:
|OPERATION PLAN-B. Senator Alan Peter Cayetano expose at the Senate plenary|
hall the plan of the Liberal Partyto oust Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte.
A P10 million of a hypothetical farm-to-market road or medicines, means a lawmaker got 20 percent or P2 million S.O.P or cut from a favored contractor or supplier.
This ensued because without the “pork barrel”, congressmen and senators could impeach the president.
In my radio program, I told my listeners that if the accusation of Senator Alan Peter Cayetano was true that the opposition Liberal Party has Plan B to oust President Rodrigo Duterte like “High Crimes”, or “Betrayal of Public Trust” as complaints, it would take one-third or 99 congressmen from the 29 members’ House of Representatives to file the Article of Impeachment or Verified Complaint to the House of Senate where it takes only 14 Senators from the two-third constitutional requirement from the 24 members’ Senate to kick out from office a sitting president.
At the latest, there are 43 opposition solons in the House while there are 14 senators who can throw a monkey wrench to the security of tenure of the president.
The 43 congressmen need 56 fellow solon to complete the 99 one-third requirement for the submission of the Article of Impeachment or Verified Complaint to the 14 senators who would hear and impeached Duterte.
But thanks heaven, we have “pork barrel” to feed the 56 congressmen not to be rambunctious but toe the line.
Looks how the 20 percent shady SOP can do to a sitting president!
The pronouncement of President Rodrigo Duterte that U.S Special Forces be pulled out in Mindanao shocked many Filipinos specially those who see the Americans as ally and protector against local enemies where the Yanks use their drone and smart bombs.
Many saw how this withdrawal affects the U.S-Philippine military alliance vis-à-vis the Chinese incursion at the South China Sea (SCS).
(Note: Last Thursday at a military camp in Bulacan, Duterte revised his earlier pronouncement where he said the withdrawal would be temporary).
Would the Philippines alienate the U.S to leave the Philippines to fend for herself against the unrestrained rampage of islands grabbing Mainland Chinese?
For me if the president has been doing brinkmanship against the American, he is on the opportune right tract on a strategic issue of a $5 Trillion a year SCS trade lane.
An alliance between Duterte and China’s Paramount Leader Xi Jinping would be prejudicial to the American since the trade lane is sandwiched by China and the Philippines.
Can you still remember my column recently titled “Duterte’s political jujitsu between China and Japan” about why the Japanese suddenly became generous to lend U.S $ 2.4 billion for the Manila to Bulacan 38-kilometer (24-mile) elevated commuter line, donate 10 big brand new Coast Guards ships, and lease five of her United States made Beechcraft King’s TC-90s to patrol the SCS against Chinese encroachment?
Why this magnanimous gesture?
Because my dear Watson the Banzai Country dread to see the Chinks and the Flips, er Filipinos smoke the peace pipes while the Sino threaten with anti-ship missiles like the Silkworm, mines and torpedoes the commercial ships of the Nippon-koku that ply the SCS’s lane.
With Duterte driving out the Americans in Mindanao (where they have killed already high valued terrorist targets in Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi thru the aid of their drones, smart bombs, P3C Orion, satellites, and others) the way of life of the Yanks in Mainland American would thus be threatened also.
With this growing animosity from the feisty and colorful Philippine president pressured the U.S Congress to spike the measly $50 million a year military aid it gives to the Flips every year?
Gee whiz, this is a pittance compared to the military aid the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave gives yearly to Israel (U.S $3.1 billion) Egypt $1.3 billion); Iraq ($300 million); Jordan ($300 million); and Pakistan ($280 million, according to the 2014 CNN.com report.
The $5.9 of billion for military funding represents 17% of the roughly $35 billion the U.S. spent on foreign aid in 2014.
Why the U.S gave Pakistan $280 million a year despite her generals’ hid No. 1 terrorist Osama bin Laden, founder and head of the Islamist group Al-Qaeda? Bin Laden was killed by the U.S Navy SEAL operatives, in a daring rescue that shamed the Israeli feat in Entebbe, Uganda, near a military academy at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan?
Because the U.S fear to see the day Pakistan share their lethal nuclear warheads to Muslim terror groups who could erase the entire population of New York or California.
Can the Abu Sayyaf, Moro National Liberation Front, Moro Islamic Liberation Front, Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, and others ISIS inspired insurgents, be a threat to the tranquility and safety of the Americans in the Land of the Milk and Honey?
The Yanks therefore should be padding the embarrassing military aid they are giving us to appease President Digong for not barring them in “perpetuity” in Mindanao if not the entire country.
(You can read my selected columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot.com and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too at firstname.lastname@example.org)