Paredes willing to support a leader like Duterte back then
Jim Paredes, a vocal critic of President Rodrigo Duterte, is recorded to have said back in 2006, 20 years after the EDSA People Power movement, that he wanted a “strong leader” who “bends rules a little bit” and a kind of government that can “knock down some people” after his dismay at the Cory Aquino government that he described as “masyadong nagpapogi, masyadong nagpa-pressure, masyadong, ah…it was too accommodating.”
Photo credits: Pinoythoughts
Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism published an article containing a podcast of Paredes’ statements and reflections on post-EDSA 20 years later where he saw that the government that replaced the Marcos dictatorship failed in delivering the democracy it promised to the people.
“Now when I look back, I think we should have knocked off a few people…”
“I think we as a people needed a whip that went with it, and Cory was not it… I think she was too self-conscious about not being a Marcos or being “Marcosian”, she didn’t want to appear like she was a dictator so she was too soft, I think. But I think we should have knocked off a few people…”
“Dati ang hinahabol natin was democracy at all costs, because we felt that democracy was going to deliver. Now the democracy that we have experienced did not deliver. I don’t think the people care very much what the form is. You could put a strong leader there, who bends rules a little bit. I think you could take that as long as the outcome is good,” Paredes said, which now stands contrary to his sentiments towards President Duterte despite the latter embodying the strong leader who bended rules a little bit and produced concrete positive outcomes.
The Duterte administration is plagued with allegations of extrajudicial and vigilante killings attributed to its aggressive anti-drug war campaign which is pivotal to protests of anti-Dutertes. Although himself anti-Duterte, Paredes said back then that “there is injustice if you don’t do justice anyway. There is injustice in not catching crooks. So, err on the side of zealousness. I would have gone that way, anyway,” and when he was asked if that means lining up the crooks against a wall and shooting them, he replies, “Oh, that would be nice, too. You know what? I wouldn’t cry over it if it happened.”
His dismay at the Aquino government stemmed from the fact that it squandered the leadership that the Filipinos gave to them after EDSA. The reforms and changes that the people wanted actualized were held at bay and corruption, debts, and various coup attempts emerged.
“I don’t think they were as bold as the people wanted them to be…masyadong nagpapogi, masyadong nagpa-pressure,” Paredes said “they should have run to the people. But [they didn’t because] what happens is that when you sit in government, the people don’t count anymore. It’s the other forces that count — the armed forces, the politicians, the moneyed, business. The people don’t count. They should have run to the people and the people would have protected them.”
It is clear that Paredes wanted a revolution for the Philippines back in his 2006 interview. When asked about his opinion on the possible repercussions that a strong government would have on the people’s freedoms, Paredes boldly commented that “there is no such thing as absolute artistic freedom, any freedom. Freedom is relative. I would be willing to be more responsible about it…but I will not give it up. If it is the government’s duty to curb (artistic freedom), then let them curb it but I will not give it up.”
Paredes felt in the era of a post-Marcos regime that the only way for liberal democracy to work is “with a strong leader” reasoning that “kung malakas-lakas yung leader mo, who can sort of – I mean, to pardon the expression – can sort of kick ass, no, matatakot ka to tangle with a strong President eh, kahit Senate President ka pa.”
He even said that if a strong leader who embodies those qualities would emerge, he “would be willing to give that leader a chance”, however all his conclusive statements about a revolution in 2006 wavers in the face of issues bombarding him now.
He lambasted Pro-Duterte supporters and decries the President for the so-called authoritarian rule despite being ready to support this style of government more than a decade ago.
As Correctphilippines.org said about Paredes’ change of heart, something went wrong with him along the way and somehow the Yellows got him.
Source: PCIJ.org, Correctphilippines.org
Paredes willing to support a leader like Duterte back then Reviewed by Newsinfo Learn on February 28, 2017 Rating: