Former president Fidel V. Ramos just had a highly peculiar press conference. He seemed as irritated over his lack of readership as he was concerned with the direction of the country.
What did he say during his confused, confusing, rambling and ranting press conference? The periodic references to the paper that publishes his column aside (and periodic scoldings of the press for not reading his commentaries) aside, his basic point was that the President has to step aside (eventually), parliamentary government has to be established (eventually), and that he has not parted ways with anyone (though who knows what will happen eventually?) and that he predicts that eventually, the poor just might take to invading the gated communities of the rich (possibly eventually).
He did have some nice things to say about the need for people to come together, and trotted out the “this country is like bibingka” analogy he adores, together with the Philippines “as one team” of more recent vintage. But the hard political truth is that he blinked -he’s given the President an additional year in office, saying the idea she should step down in 2007 when she completes six years in office “is meritorious.” Give an inch, and the President will take a mile. Another year, after all, is another year Ramos is closer to the grave.
My column for today is Parting wisdom, which tackles the parting advice to the country of the late Justice Cecilia Munoz Palma.
Regular updates to this blog will now resume, thank you for bearing with the week-long hiatus.