Each time election season approaches, many politicians dispense a lot of nonsense in television (TV) interviews conducted by the news media. Worse, these politicians think the public will readily believe their nonsense.
Take, for instance, Albay Rep. Jose Ma. “Joey” Salceda. In a TV interview last week, he lectured on why the current inflation problem came about, and his ideas on how to solve it.
That means Salceda was already able to see the coming inflation before its effects were felt by the people.
If Salceda saw the coming inflation early enough, why didn’t he do something about it as a member of Congress? Surely, he could have urged the House of Representatives to do something about the coming inflation.
What is alarming is Salceda’s answer to a question about the draft federal chapter crafted in the House under Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. At the time of Salceda’s interview, the draft endorsed by the House removed Leni Robredo, the purported Vice President of the Philippines, as the successor of President Rodrigo Duterte. The congressman was asked to comment on the exclusion of Robredo from the line of succession.
Salceda answered that although he signed the draft, he did not read the entire draft because it was very thick, and so he did not notice that Robredo was eliminated from the presidential succession line.
Good grief! That draft federal charter is no ordinary piece of legislation, but a document that threatens to drastically alter the system of government obtaining in the country. Salceda, a prominent member of the House, signed it without reading its entirety! The Philippines does not need a politician like Salceda who does not read what he signs.
Leyte Rep. Vicente Veloso is another objectionable politician. In a separate TV interview likewise last week, Veloso promoted the draft federal charter endorsed by the House. Veloso spoke as if his audience were simpletons and gullible voters. His remarks consisted of motherhood statements like government power will be effectively decentralized under a federal state.
Veloso failed to explain how and why the draft federal charter can be good for the country when it actually creates a more expensive government bureaucracy.
The most annoying part of the interview was when Veloso was asked to explain why the draft federal charter endorsed by the House does not have any provision prohibiting political dynasties.
From the circuitous, unresponsive answer given by Veloso, he seemed to say that not all political dynasties are bad; that political dynasties will only exist if the politicians want to establish one, and that many politicians like him are not interested in creating political dynasties anyway.
Holy smokes! Here is a politician who actually thinks his TV audience will fall for his nonsense.
The Veloso interview is an indication of the very low regard many politicians have for the current generation of voters.
Completing the three-ring political circus is Lorenzo “Erin” Tañada III, an ex-Rep. of Quezon Province and a rabid supporter of the Liberal Party (LP). He desperately wants to return to the political limelight as seen in his decision to run for the Senate in May 2019 under the LP banner.
Tañada III is the grandson of the late Sen. Lorenzo Tañada, a nationalistic legislator and one of the visible opponents of American military bases in the Philippines. The elder Tañada campaigned for the late Sen. Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. when the latter ran for a seat in the Interim Batasang Pambansa (IBP) in April 1978. Ninoy’s entire 21-man ticket for the national capital region lost in that controversial election held during martial law.
Interviewed on national TV about the senatorial lineup of the LP, Tañada III admitted that his political party finds it very difficult to field a complete slate of 12 candidates.
Tañada III avoided taking up any of the burning issues against the LP and President Aquino III, and instead focused on the overused idea that as a political opposition party, the LP may find the 2019 senatorial race an uphill grind.
Next, Tañada III directed the discussion to his grandfather. Then, Tañada III equated the uphill electoral battle the LP will be facing in May 2019 to the difficult struggle his grandfather went through in the 1978 campaign. He followed with how the canvassing in that controversial election went. From how Tañada III spoke, he made it appear that he was very much involved in the 1978 campaign.
Born in 1963, Tañada III would have been at most 15 years old during the 1978 IBP elections. As a young boy back then, Tañada III may have helped out in the campaign, but it is difficult to believe that his involvement was to the extent that he portrayed it to be in his TV interview.
At any rate, the tribulations the grandfather went through during the 1978 campaign are impertinent to the question of whether or not Tañada III should be elected to the Senate in May 2019. Obviously, Tañada III was taking advantage of the surname he inherited from his famous grandfather, and his father’s close association with the even more famous Ninoy Aquino.
In doing so, Tañada III believes that he can take advantage of name recall and the popularity of Ninoy Aquino on election day.
Instead of giving pretentious interviews on TV, Salceda, Veloso and Tañada III should appear in their own show on the idiot box to entertain their audiences, much like three American film comedians of the 1950s did during their time.