Wednesday, November 4, 2009

More Than P20: Why Manuel L. Quezon III Should Be A Senator

Being among those advocating for the Manolo Quezon For Senator draft on Facebook, let me raise a few points that makes me throw my lot for Mr. Quezon and what will work against him, and therefore explain my stand as to why he is among the best men for the job.

True, I have been following Mr. Quezon's writings for a while already, and his grasp of the current issues shows an intricate understanding of the workings of the political systems of the country, or whatever dysfunctional systems we might have so far. An understanding of these systems is vital to an elementary framework which will allow for legislation. Keyword: legislation. Among the tripartite branches of government we profess to have in the 1987 constitution, it is the legislative branch which requires much research, crafting of arguments, cross-referencing and understanding of the pulse of the national sphere. In our current bicameral systems which will hopefully be led to a peaceful transition in the aftermath of the Arroyo regime's removal, Mr. Quezon is in a way a part of the cosmopolitan elite most qualified enough for the job, seeing as he has an attuned-to-the-times personality not so different from that of President Quezon during the Commonwealth. That he is better suited for coordinated mobilizations is much better: he has the dynamism of the current generation with the traditional academic erudition (or whatever we have for it in this country) of the past generations so far.

The very fact that he does not seek it explains as well why he is all the more worthy of it: Plato has highlighted it in his "The Republic" that the philosopher-kings are the most ideal leaders because they do not seek office and yet are the ones who have trained all their life for the undertaking. His being an adopted member of the Quezon family quite highlights it all the more: antiquity has the Romans showing that the adopted proteges rule better than the natural children. See the rule of the Five Good Emperors and how it went downhill when Commodus assumed the post. (No, I am not talking of the Russell Crowe-Gladiator version which is bullshit; but you cannot deny Commodus has quirks unbecoming of the Roman Emperor.)

We do have to admit that he has problematic issues involved with his surname, however. The very "racist" proclamation of the elder Quezon and our general opinion of him as a power-hungry, two-timing negotiator has been well-documented in our history books; Manolo himself recognized this and has disassociated himself from it. It is precisely what Michel Foucault has already inaugurated: a constant critique of oneself's involvement. It is what made him an ardent critic of the Arroyo administration after speaking for them; it might be what makes him a transformative force in a decrepit, intellectually-desolate and obscurantist Senate.

I, being a student of the Socialist framework, have long acknowledged the fact that the current systems are self-destructive and therefore should be removed. And yet their disciplinary construction, based from the American model (which the elder Quezon himself heralded), has decidedly recidivist tendencies at the same time, which explains why we cannot do anything to reform it or do away with it. That Manolo Quezon himself does not label himself such shows a following of the post-modern post-structural thought (if he does not do so willingly and knowingly; I may of course be over-reading his actions) reflects a work ethic which is necessary in the process of state rehabilitation without bloodshed if we choose to: an understanding of how to preserve our gains yet violently cut off those which impede the state from making itself relevant to everyday life. Our past administrations have relied on the old guards and they have alienated the youth, and our elders disown them. We now have coordinators; are we to shun what we have of the "mean" we need so far? We have to acknowledge historical progression being incremental.

Quezon is among what we have. Let him make the most out of his capabilities, and it is the demos who calls for it.

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More Than P20: Why Manuel L. Quezon III Should Be A Senator by Hansley A. Juliano is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Philippines License.

1 comment:

ivan sujatmoko said...

Thank you for your info sir...