Thursday, August 29, 2013
Custom Raises Ghost
When you’re used to getting 70M pesos to 200M pesos –no sweat– a year, you have so internalized the routine that you breathe life into what otherwise was nothing more than an imagined entitlement. You so feel its life form you have convinced yourself it existed.
I am talking about lawmakers’ unwitting talking points betraying their rueful sentiment against Pork Barrel’s imminent demise. They just reek of a heap of regret over the fund’s saying sayonara to them. Haven’t you noticed? Even the lawyers among them keep on harping on their alleged constitutional mandate to directly participate in pinpointing projects and funneling funds therefor. One even boorishly equates the prospect of them being prevented access to the funds with being worthy of abolishing Congress. He was seeing red, why?
Yet a reading and countless re-reading of our 1987 Constitution would reveal no such provision charging them of the duty to identify projects, much less have a hand in directing funds therefor. Their mandate is to enact laws, to legislate, that’s why they are called legislators (who can’t even come up with responsive laws). I know legislation covers deliberating on the national budget under the General Appropriations Act, but their role is to determine the wisdom of the proposed budgetary allocations for certain departments of government, whether those justify their programmed undertakings. They seem to have re-written the constitution in their minds to accommodate the pork.
Others are insinuating, perhaps in hopes of harassing Pnoy to make a turnaround on his pronouncement of abolishing the pork, that Pnoy risks impeachment because he had cut off lawmakers’ access to funds. What? I don’t see how righting a wrong or plugging a loophole that led to abuse could be impeachable.
What is wrong with our lawmakers? What's with continued preporkcupation? Couldn’t they understand that it’s over, kaput for the pork barrel? Give it up and go back to what you have been elected to do.