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Magic

Magic

Ronald Roy

To see is to believe. On the entertainment stage, the magician saws a woman’s body in half. Both parts are wheeled apart then brought back together again and, voila, she jumps out to prove she’s alive! The audience hysterically applauds the impossible act and will eternally wonder how it was done. It was an illusion of course, but how? Wondering in dazed amazement is the very point of it all, the mental condition that will drive the audience to wish to come back to see it over and over again.

That’s how the great David Copperfield makes his big bucks. It is by means of trickery that Gloria Arroyo makes her big bucks as well, with one difference: She employs the power of Satan known as black magic. You never see her hand in the cookie jar, but the cookies disappear just the same. In the 2004 presidential elections, she was a certain loser but somehow still managed to win. And now, she’s supposed to leave office to give way to next year’s elections.

But she won’t because her pact with the Devil stipulates she’ll remain in power as long as she wants, as long as her ego needs to feed on public attention, and as long as her greed needs to feed on the good life of limousines, fur coats and the best of Le Cirque’s sparkling wines and steaks–all at the expense of poor Juan de la Cruz. Serge Remonde says she does not steal from the public coffers because, for one thing, we’ve actually never seen her hand in the cookie jar. His retort to her critics is: To see is to believe, guys. The only trouble, Mr. Remonde, is that she’s no Copperfield but an accomplice of the Devil himself.

I sense her coming abominable act to remain on the saddle is to pull a rabbit out of the hat in an electoral trick of the no-election variety. There are many ways to do this. But the most plausible and least messy is that we go manual next year because of Smartmatic-Tim’s inability to deliver the machines. And as usual, we’ll be the same fools to believe an announcement to that effect.

Migs Reyes, a GMA-basher who thinks I was once a priest because of my grasp of Latin, asks how moral revolutions are. He was also the one who told me after the 2004 elections to accept Gloria’s victory on the basis of the Latin adage: Vox Populi, Vox Dei (The voice of the people is the voice of God). I told him the adage does not apply to cheats, and that besides the original adage reads: Vox Populi Est Non Semper Vox Dei (The voice of the people is not always the voice of God). Thus, during Noah’s time when the world’s peoples chose rulers who would yield to their clamor for licentious and inordinate lifestyles, the Lord inundated them.

I find the other Latin adage to be more apt in the matter of elections. It must however be stressed that Salus Populi Est Suprema Lex implies that, as its author, we are above the Charter. Therefore, just as water cannot rise above its source, neither can the Chapter rise above us. Definitely it is morally justifiable to defend the state’s life even if we must die doing it. It was this adage that Jefferson and Lincoln must have had in mind in justifying overthrows of Tyrants.

Finally, Migs asks why I’m “sticking it out with, of all people, Erap.” Is it because of some benefit I can get from him, like a presidential appointment? Not so, not that there is anything wrong with seeking a favor as a reward. It’s normal for volunteers to angle for some kind of recompense from candidates they’re supporting on the hustings. Unfortunately, however, they campaign for candidates seen as winners. Joining the bandwagon can be disastrous because it does not always necessarily put the right people in office.

I call mine a “pure vote”. When I vote, I scan a candidate’s assets like: his track record, sincerity, courage, vision, forgiving nature, decisiveness, sense of humor, sense of justice and sense of destiny. You bet, presidential candidate Joseph “Erap” Estrada’s got them all. One last thing: I hardly ever see him. I’ve known him for over forty years, have always campaigned for him in Tarlac, Quezon City and wherever, have never sought a favor from him, nor have I ever been offered one by him. I just happen to believe he’s the best man to extricate us from the six-trillion-peso-foreign-debt rut Gloria’s shoved us into the past five years. From where I sit, Erap’s victory next year is going to be a reality, not magic.

(Email: arnydolor@yahoo.com, cell # 09186449517, landline # (02)7106701)

Ms. Ninez Cacho-Olivarez

Publisher and editor-in-chief

Dear Ninez,

For your consideration, please.

Yours,

Ronnie (Roy)

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