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Salus Populi Est Suprema Lex

November 5, 2008 Leave a comment Go to comments

Salus Populi Est Suprema Lex
Ronald Roy  November 05, 2008

       The latest flash report I received was a bit alarming and, to this hour, remains unverifiable.  Perhaps the DOJ is still keeping it under wraps, but the word is persistent that Sec. Raul Gonzalez succumbed to a massive heart attack last night, that his remains lie at Arlington, and that the cause of his instantaneous demise was the fright he got when he saw his reflection on a mirror in a restroom of a hotel! (Belated Happy Halloween greetings from Leslie Bocobo of SYERAP FILES).

       In 1988 at the age of 53, I was diagnosed as having contracted diabetes mellitus; arteriosclerosis in the heart area (the thickening and hardening of arterial walls arising from fatty deposits); spondylitis (vertebral inflammation) and osteoarthritis, both of which made me hobble in pain even with the aid of two canes; and bronchiectasis, a bronchial anomaly similar to a dreadful mix of asthma and emphysema. 

       Well, 20 years later, I’m still afflicted by these ailments, although with the help of a recent pacemaker implant.  I was then, and probably still is, a certified dead man walking, except that with a disciplined change of lifestyle, a lot of prayer and medication, I intend to stay around a little while longer to see a tyrant’s downfall.  I have come to realize this as my ultimate raison d’ėtre, not to mention a desire to savor the fresh air of a reborn nation for 10 more years.

       Technically speaking, Joc Joc Bulate sorry, I mean Bolante – could die anytime because a heart attack or a stroke arising from arteriosclerosis cannot be predicted.  And yet, he is not a walking time bomb as in my extremely complicated case.  Romeo Saavedra, Bolante’s attending physician, might very well have said he was not risking the release of the former DA undersecretary because he could be hit by a falling meteor.  Is the doctor suggesting we wait until his patient’s arteries soften, his gum abcess recedes, his prostrate swelling subsides, his kidney, gall and urinary stones are blasted, his memory is back, etcetera?  God Almighty, this could take forever! 

       By authority of his professional credentials, Saavedra cannot possibly be convinced by his own prognostic hogwash which even the most simple folk see as patronizing.  They would rather dismiss the whole sordid hospital confinement as yet another brazen attempt to pull the wool over their eyes.  Yes, these are the usual simple folk who joke away their anxieties but who, you can be sure, want greater clerical support for their struggle against the little despot – she who will stop at nothing to insure Bolante’s investigation by her confrere the Ombudsman, rather than see him brought to a superior investigating body, the Philippine Senate.

       I have written more than once that as the year 2010 neared, we would see a heightening of the revolutionary mood at the instance of a decisive CBCP initiative.  I have written often that with a set of bribable cardinals, bishops and prelates down the line, we would never see the emergence of democratic reforms.  I hope the threat of Sec. Raul Gonzalex to arrest seditious elements in cassocks is not a bluff but a determined vapid strategy to avert an overthrow that his patroness has herself been provoking.  Change, moral change, is well nigh, Raul my friend!  We are prepared for your Gestapo-like tactics in the streets, parishes, anywhere, anytime.  Go ahead and make our day.

       But first, I suggest you call a planning session with Speaker Nograles and Senate President Villar who are concerned only with their hold on their exalted offices, Senator Angara and other traitors who think now is the worst time to push for moral change and shamefully insist that it is the perfidious Ombudsman’s Office, not the Senate, that has the jurisdiction to investigate the Bolante case.  They argue that if the economy is good, and it’s never been good the past 8 years, why change Gloria who boasts that God personally told her to stay?  And if the economy reels in a global crisis as it now does, all the more we should retain her?  Obviously, this will make sense only  with nincompoops.

*                                   *                                   *

       “Hello, Mr. Roy. I am an Indonesian poet and a Rotarian.  About six years ago I met a wonderful Filipino Rotarian who is not being given a fair deal by your government.  What is so wrong with giving Mr. Bolante’s body enough time to heal completely?  Are your reforms more important than a human being’s health? “  I replied, “The flaw of human observation is the understandable inability to know the real person in social and civic interactions.  Mr. Bolante would not have become a Vice President of Rotary International if he had not initially shown the essential dash and polish.  But then, that’s all what it is: the best food forward in public.  Generally, there is a time for everything.  There is a time for hello and a time for goodbye, a time for joy and a time for grief, a time for peace and a time for war.  But the time for change, moral change, is ever now, as stubbornly unpostponable as the coming dawn.”

*                                   *                                   *

       Sarah Speck, a lawyer from Australia, emailed me a query seeking enlightenment on which law we should follow in resolving the question of investigative jurisdiction over the Bolante case.  Is it the Constitution?  Jurisprudence, Senate rules or tradition?  None of the above, Sarah.  Always, the Fundamental Law prevails.  The only exception is where the very democratic life of a nation has been placed in jeopardy, as in the Bolante case, in which case we should follow the dictum, “Salus populi est suprema lex” (the welfare of the people is the supreme law).  This law is higher than the Constitution.  The welfare of the people is the lawful and moral source of their power to overthrow a tyrant, hence, the fountain head of their sovereign character.

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