Ex-DLSU History professor says leaders like Duterte will always be under attack, true powers in PH are big business & political elites?

Ever wonder why President Duterte has been under attack even before he even formally assumed his post after winning the 2016 election?

Or even before he won the 2016 election and until today, the attack has been relentless?

Former De La Salle history professor Van Ybiernas offered a brilliant but controversial explanation on Facebook why such phenomenon exist.

Ybiernas said this trend is particularly true to democratically elected officials – especially those subject to term limits.

Ybiernas lamented the true powers in the Philippines are the big business and the national political elites.

Ybiernas elaborated that big business and the national political elite have a long lasting and mutually beneficial partnership. Big business finances the political campaigns of national politicians. In turn, these politicians safeguard the interests of big business. Do you agree with this?

Ybiernas said that a certain David Kang called this relationship mutual hostages.

Outside the national sphere (Congressmen) lies a very loose coalition/multinational businesses and politicians. Their common ideology is neoliberalism.

According to Wikipedia, “Neoliberalism” is contemporarily used to refer to market-oriented reform policies such as “eliminating price controls, deregulating capital markets, lowering trade barriers” and reducing state influence in the economy, especially through privatization and austerity.

Ybiernas remarked these alliance don’t like it when popular politicians like Duterte rise to power WITHOUT THEIR BLESSINGS AND ASSISTANCE. (If I may add, politicians who have no “utang na loob” (debt of gratitude) from big businessmen, tends not to bow to their demands or dictates.)

Why?

Ybiernas explained these politicians will likely seek to break apart that existing partnership, especially if it is mobilized to attack their base of power, such as what’s happening now.

Because these politicians will likely seek to break apart that existing partnership, especially if it is mobilized to attack their base of power, such as what’s happening now.

The national political elite (Senators) are the ones who aggressively push for this attack because it’s their position who is at stake. Big business tries to get along with everyone, and this explains why this partnership is showing some cracks.

However, there are some cases Ybiernas pointed out wherein big business miscalculates their approach to the popular leaders, and misreads the latter’s intentions while in power. Big business —probably because of their experiences with politicians— think that these popular politicians are simply shaking them down to squeeze more concessions from them.

And this is where they misjudge Duterte, Ybiernas declared because PRRD is an old man in the twilight of his career. This guy is not saving anything for the future because he’s too old for that.

Ybiernas believes Duterte is not shaking them down and I am sure many of his supporters do agree with Ybiernas conviction. Duterte the politician in his last hurrah is big trouble for them.

The old solution would have been to just @ss@ssinate Duterte. However, Big business knew if they do that, it’s handing the presidency to Sara Duterte on a silver platter. And at this point, nobody really knows what Sara is thinking.

People (big business and political elite) are beginning to learn that crude as Rodrigo is, he may be the EASIER Duterte to deal with. Sara looks more stubborn than Daddy Rody, which is scaring big business.

Ybiernas noted the investors are basically caught between the rock and the hard place. Ordinarily, that would mean a withdrawal of investment. Investors hate putting money into an uncertain situation —in this case, uncertainty means not knowing what Sara Duterte is going to do with a lot of onerous contracts not in favor of the government.

But investors can’t withdraw because the Philippines is a fast growing economy and returns on investment is practically guaranteed. Besides, there is enough evidence that the Dutertes will leave your business alone if you don’t disadvantage the people.

Ybiernas argued that big business is skeptical that politicians like the Dutertes are for real. To them, nobody is an honest politician. Their problem is that they can’t tell if the Dutertes are not as greedy as they look.

Ybiernas compared the game played by big business and president Duterte to a poker game and big business wants to maximize profit. That’s how their game is played. But they can’t seem to read the Dutertes properly.

Ybiernas said this businessmen who are obsessed about maximum profits are pissed at the Dutertes because they can’t read them properly although they always fancy themselves as great poker players.

Sure, they will still turn in a profit. Business flourishes in Duterte country in Davao. But that’s not the point. Big businesses need to maximize profit. More importantly, they fancy themselves as great poker players but they can’t seem to read the Dutertes properly. And obviously, minimum profits is like a loss to big business. It’s unacceptable to them. Problem is they seem like they can’t squeeze more from the Dutertes and that pisses them.

Ybiernas claimed that these businessmen secretly funded destabilization campaigns not just to oust Duterte but also to discredit their name, perhaps out of fear that Sara Duterte will succeed the old man by virtue of the good reputation she inherited from her father’s administration. If that happens, maximum profit is down the drain for another six years for these maximum profit-oriented businessmen.

That’s why secretly they support and finance —not too aggressively and not directly— efforts to not only unseat Duterte but more importantly, to discredit the name. Problem is, it’s looking like a real waste of money.

Ybiernas said that big business want to see Robredo in Malacanang but they realized its a long shot so its a waste of money to bet their money on Robredo.

There’s nothing they’d rather see than a corrupt and malleable Robredo in Malacanang. But that seems like a waste of money, too because they realize she’s a long shot.

Ybiernas ended the post by describing the Philippines under Duterte as the best of times in the Philippines, if not, certainly the most interesting times.

I tell you, these are the best of times in the Philippines. If not the best of times, then certainly the most interesting times.

Mabuhay!

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Source: Van Ybiernas

2 Comments

  1. Elsa E. Aguilon July 8, 2021
  2. Ermelo Vertucio September 29, 2021

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