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Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Now, Big Business is Gearing Up for War

Gloria is definitely taking her cues from big business. Makati- and Ortigas-based businessmen, for a change, were the first to call for Abalos' impeachment. The ever-Gloria-bootlickers in the financial markets surprisingly delivered that strong message Gloria never thought they would say.

If there is any group that could influence her (aside, of course, from the virtual junta that is already holding her hostage), it is big business that she fears most. Sad to say, despite what many bloggers have been espousing, a million warm bodies, hell, even the whole Metro population, in the streets would not make her give an inch. A few truckloads of battle-ready soldiers behind a phalanx of truncheon-swinging maniacs from the PNP flanked by a pair of fire trucks on an early offensive could easily quell whatever mammoth rally the opposition could assemble in every street. If these forces were not enough, she has Ricky Razon to provide her a whole terminal of container vans to fortify her position.

Not even the church, whose leaders stand to lose their payola from the Patroness of Jueteng, are willing to risk confrontation. A few good men? Nah, too few.

I read the signs very early on in this ZTE controversy when the bourse lurkers in the Ayala Triangle-based half of the PSE got the shivers when Joey DV confirmed to media what they have been ignoring all along - Jarius Bondoc's exposé - on what appeared to be stealing a legit, almost-done deal, by powerful crony-friends (the Golf-playing Mafia) from an aspiring entrepreneur (JDV3) in an industry (ICT) that has spearheaded Gloria's much-vaunted, but equally-doubted, economic growth. It is this group that is standing on Billions of Pesos who are ready and capable of financing a full-scale military action when push comes to shove, like they did in the past.

Listen, even the securities traders are asking for Abalos' head. Makati Business Club, as expected, did the same, but look who beat them to the draw! It was Gloria's cherubims and seraphims in black ties and suits who stopped in the middle of their hallelujahs and chorused, "Foul!"

Kirstie Kenney's first letter leaked to media weeks ago didn't generate as much noise, but when she repeated it the other Friday, the many biz chamber bigwigs, trade org leaders, and ordinary businessmen in their usual weekender booze parties later that night were all concerned of the potential disaster this new scandal could generate and how the audacity of a select, domineering few who are favored by their alliance (or are in cahoots) with the conjugal manipulators could affect their very own businesses. Joey De Venecia's announcement over the weekend to name the "Mystery Man" in the forthcoming Senate hearing whipped-up even greater intrigue that by Monday, practically ALL corporate boardrooms holding regular Monday ManCom meetings in Ayala, Ortigas, and elsewhere were discussing the same topic. The businessmen were getting nervous and panicky because many of their staff were talking of the same things, the scandal has cut accross national awareness at an alarming rate.

The gov't intel networks must have been bustling with activity monitoring text messages about who they guessed the "mystery man" was or listening in on their bugging devices of key people in politics, business, media, academe and others discussing conspiracy theories and courses of action. Thus, "mystery man" and co-conspirators had to take the first flight out.

Meanwhile, Neri is generally seen by business as sympathetic to its cause in regard to monopolies, level playing fields, free market, and "regulatory capture". Now that word is widespread that his transfer to an office outside of his field was due to his stepping on the turf of the Golf-playing Mafia, many businessmen have began to examine their own alliances, some, maybe, were enlightened that those whom they have been supporting for some time has actually sold out on them. Some are taking the view over the long haul on what effects such horseplay have on their own agenda. I'm sure many switched sides, many are now vocal about it.

What I don't know is whether Abalos' impeachment, then resignation has quenched the wildfire or has even stoked the flames. Malacañang seems to appear confident that the controversy has died, of course, we also know how incompetent these fools are in reading people's sentiments. In what may be seen as a ploy to save face by looking resolute and honest in front of the Chinese in one hand, OR as an arrogant move to totally ignore the outcry by Filipinos for cancelation of the deal on the other, Gloria's China trip and Fatso's return from a very. very short "vacation" without the two seeing each other, I believe is merely for show, a public relations stunt concocted to gauge how far up the accountability ladder the public feels this scandal has reached, making it handy for the political think-tank in Malacañang in designing future spins. Three scenarios: first, Gloria alone with the FG in Europe. Second, FG alone with Gloria in China. And third, Gloria and FG together in the country. How the public reacts in each scenario will determine under which combination the public's anger is more flustering, therefore, more dangerous. It may even lead to FG's being banished from the conjugal dictatorship, even if just, again, for show.

We will see how this develops in the coming days.

7 Comments:

At 9:33 AM, October 03, 2007, Blogger Diego K. Guerrero said...

Crony capitalism is the name of the game. Gloria Arroyo’s crony Ricky Razon has dominated stevedoring business nationwide. Political dynasties dominates local and national political scene. The ruling class elite have secured juicy government contracts in connivance with favorite cronies in the business sector.

 
At 10:49 AM, October 03, 2007, Anonymous chi said...

It's about time that Big Business acts on protecting its turf and gives support to the cry of the publics, or face the consequencies of Ricky Razon lording over them all.

 
At 9:52 PM, October 03, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tongue,

You're right on all counts!

If big business hadn't come into the picture towards the last 3 months of Erap's presidency, I have no doubt, he would still have had a fighting chance of a few months survival and not have to leave on 20 January.

I remeber we tackled this in Ellen's blog a year or many months ago? More like more than a year or so.

When I heard (through one of Rene de Villa's former military asst) that Vicky Garchitorena of the Ayalas was side by side with Rene de Villa then a director of some sort in the Ayala group, giving support to Arroyo during of companies the impeachement trial of Erap, I could tell that Erap's goose was cooked. It was a simple case of dedeucing after that with the Concepcions, etc. joining in the fray. Erap's goose was cooked.

In other words, Gloria is jarred everytime the MBC becomes 'bellicose'. One cannot fight big business in the Philippines because at the end of the day when big business is feeling hurt, there will be a domino effect. This is why she keeps hammering into the heads of those who matter that the country is experiencing 7.5% growth. That is her shield! Never mind the 3.8 million Filipinos who have been experiencing involuntary hunger during the last 3 months.

You're absolutely right that not even 2 million bodies will get Gloria to step down - they will scamper at the mere sound of guns being fired.

The growth of the economy is her shield - couple that with her ability to react almost immediately when things don't look bright for her, that's hard to beat. Why, most our congressmen are businessmen so how could we ask them to do something to dent Gloria's hold on power. She will make them happy by allowing them to go on with their businesses.

With a top businesman for a Senate Boss, you think he will risk all that by going against the establishment? No! But if he feels at all that his businesses are getting the pinch, count on Villar to get out there with guns ablaze.

To make a dent to that protective wall of her would take moral herculean efforts by the middle and upper class or the united cry of half of the country's population attacking Malacanang!

Anna

 
At 1:37 AM, October 04, 2007, Blogger baycas2 said...

congrats! you've been cited at mlq3's site.

...anew u can blog, tongue in.

 
At 6:52 AM, October 04, 2007, Blogger Tongue's Wrath said...

DKG,
Crony Capitalism also has its positive side: providing jobs, generating taxes for gov't, providing solutions to the needs of the people etc. But good only to the extent that it does not harm the public when it seeks PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT from the governing allies.

When cronies like these bastards use their influence to STEAL from the people, they must be stopped at all cost. That is CRIMINAL CRONYISM at its ugliest.

*****

Chi,
I guess, when many scoundrels who thought their business interests were being served by their patroness begin to realize the little pet they put on her perch and fed with their hands has turned into the monster that is now out to devour them one by one, they will probably end up with only 2 choices: remove the animal from its cage then release it back into the wild, or they use the shotgun.

****

Annanymous,

Not to mention what was blogged that Smart and Globe were giving away prepaid cards right there in EDSA2 like it was an election candidate's business card. But that was peanuts. Maceda later said billions raised by businessmen went into buying a neatly-wrapped coup d'etat package being offered by Angie Reyes' salesmen.

The questionable economic growth figures? Many businessmen are convinced this is only true in relation to the Call Center/BPO and the Construction industries. The latter, courtesy mainly of OFWs in the lower scale and again, Call Centers vying for mcuh-needed floorspace in the upsacale biz districts in the high end.

Agriculture is almost next to dead. Where more than half the population depend on farming, it's stupid that top gov't leaders (and their spouses!) have cornered almost all import quotas and dump the same to the markets, at the expense of the farmers. With the help of their underlings in the ports, they understate, if not completely evade taxes.

Manufacturing, which employs the next bigger slice of the population is still struggling amidst the down-sizing of consumer goods, high taxes, bureaucratic red-tape, runaway oil and energy costs, etc. Despite the already-steep costs in handling their imported production inputs, another port monopoly being cooked is the last thing they need.

Matagal na silang nagpapaloko. Ngayon lang nagising.

*****

Baycas2,

Oo nga ano? I haven't been to MLQ's blog for like a week, I only found out (thanks to you)that I was tagged in his last 2 posts! Kewl!

Thank again, 'tol. Activate your account now, ikaw rin!

 
At 4:43 AM, October 05, 2007, Anonymous chi said...

Tongue,

I prefer they use the shotgon on her!

 
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