Jose Maria Sison

[The Slingshot] Joma and Duterte: The greatest mutual flattery in Filipino history

Antonio J. Montalvan II
[The Slingshot] Joma and Duterte: The greatest mutual flattery in Filipino history
'By Joma Sison’s embrace of Duterte, he became a counter-revolutionary, defying his socialist ethos by accepting an enemy of socialism'

They were two men at cross-purposes with each other. Ironically, both needed each other’s impulsive validation, however whimsical and fleeting. At least one was either lying through his teeth, had faulty and wild data, and certainly illusions of grandeur, which the other accepted at face value.

The actual conversation on Skype, lasting almost 9 minutes, took place on April 25, 2016.

RODRIGO DUTERTE: Kumusta po kayo?

JOSE MARIA SISON: Mabuti naman. Magandang pagkakataon ito para makapag-pasalamat ako sa inyo at sa Exodus for Justice and Peace kaugnay ng pagpalayâ sa limang police officers. At siyempre nagpapasalamat ako sa mga…marami na kayong ginawâ pagtulong sa pag-release sa mga bihag at sa lahat ng inyong ginawa dati. 

D: Yung mga elite, sir, yung mga alam mo na, the prim and proper kuno sa ating bayan, wala namang magagawa, eh sabi may growth yang 6%. Eh wala naman kaming nakikita sa babâ, it’s the oligarchs and the poor, wala ang middle class, everybody is suffering. Eh sabi ko no, this has to change, this cannot go on. We have to bring in the middle class, we have to make it stronger. So we need education, pagkain nila. And wala akong infrastructure except itong sa Greater Manila Area, Metro Manila. Ah unahin ko muna ang education, agriculture, pati health, sir, focus ko sa budget ko, these will be three. Kasi El Niño is coming in, and I would need every available land na may moisture. But ang program ko, pagkatapos nito when the rains come, ah I will ah take ah more attention sa agriculture, health, pati education. Education is the only way that can really (unintelligible) people here. Malayo masyado ang

S: Kayo naman ang may initiative na nanawagan na handa kayo makipag-coalition, at nagpakialam ng pagka-unawâ sa programa ng NDF. Kaya’t sa oras na kayo na yung mananalo, eh dapat yung mga kinatawan natin ay talaga kasi, eh mag kita-kita na. After us, kung ano naman, sumingit yung pandarayâ, ay lalong ano rin, eh patayan para magkikita ang isa’t isa para labanan yung mga mandarayâ. Eh hindi sila magtatagal sa kapangyarihan na yan eh. Hindi lang pwedeng lokohin yung masa sa maliwanag na sitwasyon, na ke-survey nila, ke…ano yung laki ng mga pulong atsaka enthusiasm ng masa, hindi na ano eh. The trend is there, no?

D: Yes, sir. So ako sir I am just hoping that wala lang dayaan, and we will do our best, and if God wills it, ah there will be a new horizon, a new ah…ah sunrise for the Philippines. I will address it tong pinakababâ sir kasi kawawâ talaga, they live in squalor and blight. And I have to think very hard and think well how to remedy the situation.

S: Opo, maganda. Maganda ang inyong pananaw. At ah ah…umaasa ako na magpatuloy yung trend at ah …ah sa lahat ng kandidato kayo yung kuwan eh pinakabukas…sa ah…sa kooperasyon. At ah pagkakaroon ng kapayapaan sa ating bayan.  

D: Meron sir.

S: Meron akong palagay na kikilis yung pagkakaroon ng isang gobyerno ng kuwan…national unity, peace, and development.

D: Yes sir.

S: At ah, umaasa ding ganun kayo naman ang nakapag-salita ng maliwanag tungkol sa pangangailangan na magkaroon ng tunay at ganap na kalayaan, at ah…kailangan yung ah ah…pagpapakilos ng mga manggagawa at magsasaka bilang demokratikong pwersa para maisakatuparan ang demokrasya at ah kelangan magkaroon ng kaunlaran sa ekonomiya sa pamamagitan ng national industrialization at land reform. Ahm…yun na rin nagtataka ako sa yung takbo ng election eh, sa kampanya, nakita ko na may magsasabi tungkol sa ah…(unintelligible) ang krisis, yung krisis na nag umpisa ng 2008 eh kuwan eh…lumala, at ngayon tila patungan ng panibagong ano…panibagong bugso ng krisis. At ah…naku! Eh kung (laughs) mandaraya pa sila yun bang pagdating ng second part of the year baka dyan na yung ano…yung lahat ng kabulastugan ni Noynoy Aquino…yung pagpasok ng…kunwari nakaka…nakakapagkaroon ng growth rate na mataas eh pero dahil lamang yan sa half (money?) portfolio investments at yang portfolio investments na yan ay dyan naman nag umpisa na lumabas ng 2014 kaya yung 2012 to 2014 para bang ano…ah high growth rate at high unemployment and widespread poverty.

D: Correct. Ah I will …I…I’ll…I will follow the pattern of socialism, sir (unintelligible). That is the…sinabi ko na sa…in public in every meeting I said I am a socialist and ah…though I am not a member of the Communist Party but I am a socialist and I belong to the Left. Alam na ng mga tao sir, sabi ko this will be the first time in the history of our country na merong Leftist for president. Walang masama sa Left. We are more tolerant to the…to the…doubts of government but we will follow what is ah…right for our people. Ang ano ko sir is to raise really the margin, marginalized poverty. Mai-angat ko lang naman ng konti after 6 years maligaya na ako, sir.

S: (Silence) At mahalaga na sa electoral campaign pa lang ay kuwan…ah inilagay na ninyo sa agenda yung programa ng isang ah…ah Left president today at ah…siyempre kapag kayo ay nasa posisyon na mas marami kayong magagawa maipapatupad ang inyong ah…ah mga…ang inyong ah misyon at ah…vision para sa kabutihan ng sambayanang Pilipino.

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D: Galit ako sa oligarchs, sir, pati yung mayayaman, ah…they are there getting…they get the fat of the land. At yan ang problema dyan sa ating gobyerno. And they allow it, and they allow exemptions sa taxation na bilyon na bilyon. Samantala ang tao, pag hindi Mamasapano widows nag hingi ng konti kung bibigyan pa sila wala nang pera but all…ito mga eroplano nila nakita namin, tax free, 44 million, 50 million. Kaya ako sabi ko, this cannot go on, this cannot go on. And I will promise you it will be a clean and fair government for everybody.

Ah…I wish you well, all the best for you, mga kasama natin dyan. And hopefully I will visit you before I will assume office. Kasi…may ang…the agenda…

S: Po magaling…mabuti po…

D: Kasi yung agenda…ang agenda, sir…

S: Nagpapasalamat ako sa pagkakataong ito na magkausap tayo at maraming salamat sa postcard na . . . hindi magtatagal magkita na tayo…

D: And also to have…to prepare the agenda para pag andito wala na masyadong ah…debate or issues unresolved…dyan na ho natin gawin ang agenda ho pagdating…the agenda only. Yun ang natutunan ko sayo, sir, salamat!

S: Maraming salamat!

D: Sige, sir.

By Joma Sison’s embrace of Duterte, he became a counter-revolutionary, defying his socialist ethos by accepting an enemy of socialism: a tyrant who encouraged a personality cult around him, killing critical citizenship, and enriching/enlisting his family in the dirty process that makes people poor – graft and corruption, let alone people’s disempowerment. 

These were not unknown to Joma. Certainly the cadres who swear to his following in Davao City’s Paquibato District, by their procedural social investigations around the city, had long known the very elements that created Dutertismo long before 2016. – Rappler.com

Antonio J. Montalván II is a social anthropologist who advocates that keeping quiet when things go wrong is the mentality of a slave, not a good citizen.

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