May 18, 2024

“Honor Among Thieves” is a 1993 novel by English author Jeffrey Archer which I ironically read when I walked the august halls as a member of Congress.
In Mario Puzo’s “Godfather,” the “code of silence” or omertà, the mafia does not compromise the criminal activities of other criminals. Thus even the corrupt or criminals have some form of code of honor, moral, justice, or ethics.
Here and now, there seems to be no longer honor among thieves, especially of the political breed. Take for example the ruckus in the race for speakership in the House of Representatives.
During my time, House Speaker Joe de V “peacefully” held the fort for two consecutive terms until he ran for president and was “landscaped” by Erap.
On the first day of the 18th Congress, Rep. Allan Peter Cayetano was elected House Speaker after intervention by the President to prevent supporters from fighting each other for the post.
Congressman and Rep. Lord Allan Velasco had a “gentleman’s agreement” brokered by the President himself to the effect that the first would serve 15 months as Speaker and the latter the last 21 months. By a twist of fate, the first refuses to vacate the seat claiming the latter would not have the votes to confirm him as more than 184 solons rejected his resignation.
In an interview with Karen Davila, Cayetano even called Velasco a liar because there is no agreement for him to resign on Oct. 14 and he was supposed to do the announcing himself, yet two minutes after they talked, Velasco texted everyone that he was the new Speaker. Then Cayetano said without blinking an eye “all politicians are liars,” presumably himself included.
Sabagay, Ping Lacson once said he hates politics and will never run for public office but he is now a senator with moist eyes on having a second run as president. Even his ‘protégé’ aped him telling all and sundry he would never run but the same old story and moist eyes somewhere.
Why are we not surprised that there is no palabra de honor in the world of politics. It is really a laughing matter for us in the outside looking in, as those in power are kapit-tuko sa pwesto. Foes before are allies today and vice versa.
I was introduced to Atty. Lord Allan Velasco when he accompanied his political patron Sara Duterte whose actual friend is the wife, Kristina Amara-Velasco, here in Baguio. Unlike Cayetano who oozes with confidence, he seemed shy, silent. Some pundits say that Lord continues to appeal to Cayetano to honor their gentleman’s agreement.
Lord made two serious mistakes – he assumed that Cayetano was a gentleman. Second, he assumed he had word of honor. Patawa talaga!
What’s the difference between those in kindergarten and Congress? Those in kindergarten grow up and the opposite of a pro is a con, the opposite of progress is Congress. So, what happens on Oct. 14? I am betting a cup of coffee that the circus will continue with the clowns in power and Lord Allan will never get to be Speaker.
How many congressmen does it take to screw in a light bulb? Answer: Seven. One to promote the project to the public and Congress; one to write the bill and bring it to for filing at the Index Division; one to approve the bill once it has been brought up at plenary; one to secure the zoning rights once the bill is passed; one to allocate the funds from the budget; one to hire the labor needed once the budget is approved; and one to screw the light bulb into the ceiling.
A congressman and the Pope died on the same day. Due to a minor clerical error, the Pope went to hell, while the congressman went to heaven. When the Pope arrived in hell, everyone realized the mistake. Due to an issue with the union, they couldn’t swap the two until the next day, and the Pope had to spend the night in hell, while the congressman spent the night in heaven. The next day the paperwork got worked out. On his way up to heaven, the Pope ran into the congressman. The congressman asked the Pope, “How was your night in hell?” “Very educational,” responded the Pope. “I’ve learned a lot from the experience, but now I’m glad I’m going to heaven. I’ve been waiting all my life to meet the Virgin Mary.” “Ooh, sorry,” said the congressman, “you should have been there yesterday!” Sigh.