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HomeSOCARRATIt's terrible, it's fine: Notes on Day 1 of the Marcos II...

It’s terrible, it’s fine: Notes on Day 1 of the Marcos II presidency

The title is an excerpt from one of Mao Tse Tung’s selected essays which he wrote in 1927 and was titled An Investigation On The Peasant Movement in Hunan. Mao was then leading a revolution in China, a revolution that would win several decades later.

It was from this essay, also called the Hunan report, that Mao made his most influential description of a revolution. He said “revolution is not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a picture, or doing embroidery; it cannot be so refined, so leisurely and gentle, so temperate, kind, courteous, restrained and magnanimous.”

In that essay, a required reading for cadres or those who want to become members of the Philippine Communist Party, Mao justified the extremes, and endorsed the violence surrounding the activities of peasant associations.

Mao defended the moves of the peasants amid criticisms even from within the Chinese Communist Party.

In my youth, I was one of those who believed in Mao’s position. It was what most wide-eyed Filipino Maoist believe in and hoped in for the revolution to win.

I used the title on the occasion of the inaugural of Ferdinand Marcos Jr for it symbolizes the very essence of how his presidency is viewed, fractured into two main narratives, both claiming to fight for the truth and against “historical revisionism.”

To the Leftists and the Liberal Party supporters, both under the political strand of the democrats, it would be “terrible,” – a return to the dark days of martial rule, lies, redtagging, and economic hardships.

To his supporters and everyone else, it would be “fine,” the start of a new dawn, a new beginning, a chance for the nation to become great again.

A lot hoped and dreamt when Cory Aquino was swept to power, like what they did, too, during the terms of Ramos, Estrada, Arroyo and the second Aquino.

It is not known if the corpses of dreams and hopes littered the side in this long line of succession of presidents.

I am certain of only one dream’s corpse: that of Joma Sison strewn by the roadside of the Duterte presidency which he once thought, rather mistakenly, that he could coopt.

The 1986 EDSA Revolution aka People Power I has led to an increase in the country’s intelligentsia and the rise of power blocs still aligned with Aquino-Liberal faction or those of the Marcoses.

These major power blocs have been alternately on and off power since 1986 with off-power blocs crying for change everytime an election comes.

The issues against the Marcoses have long been played up against them since 1986 through Aquino-aided mainstream media and through history books written by American authors.

The call for a review of history is appropriate. Not all the facts are in.

A simple check of a history textbook in public elementary schools would show that the Marcos dictatorship is mentioned only in passing on one page.

So what historical revisionism are the anti-Marcos forces talking about?

Which brings us to the question: why, in all her purity, did President Cory Aquino not convene a Truth Commission to establish the facts about human rights violations when she was swept to power in 1986?

Why is it that years after her husband’s death we are still unsure as to who killed Ninoy Aquino?

Is there something dark and sinister about his murder?

Clearly, human rights violations is a charge that has been weaponized against the Marcoses.

A review of history should include both the Marcoses and the Aquinos.

It is not for their sake that history must be clarified.

It is for our best interest.

The day must come, sooner, this writer hopes, than later, that we will not be lulled into invented narratives from those who claim to fight for the “people’s sake” sake but are actually out to either wrestle power from.

Or perpetuate themselves.

Julius D. Mariveles
Julius D. Mariveles
An amateur cook who has a mean version of humba, the author has recently tried to make mole negra, the Mexican sauce he learned by watching shows of master chef Rick Bayless. A journalist since 19, he has worked in the newsrooms of radio, local papers, and Manila-based news organizations. A stroke survivor, he now serves as executive editor of DNX.
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