Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Miriam-less Senate


The following story is pure fiction.

Miriam Defensor Santiago is now in the Netherlands as one of the judges of the International Criminal Court.


Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile entered the hall for the plenary session, smiling and walking briskly towards his seat. It was a glorious afternoon for him. Blissful, in fact. He will preside over a session without the woman who almost gave him a heart-attack in a privilege speech. But then he realized, she’s also his god-daughter and they both used to work for The Man, the husband of a Delusional Frustrated-Beauty-Queen Congresswoman. Everything is forgiven.



Before the president arrived, Sen. Joker Arroyo was already present in the hall, sitting quietly and calmly in his chair. But inside him, he is saddened because to lose a member such as Miriam was a great loss, not only for the Senate, but for the whole country. He dreads the moment when the session would start. He wouldn’t be able to bear the boring exchanges of opinions and debates. He felt that the hall was bland and gloomy.

It didn’t help to lighten up his mood when the majority floor leader entered the hall, accompanied by his co-stars, Revilla, Estrada and Lapid. The people in gallery swiftly pulled out their cameras and mobile phones from their bags and pockets. High popularity ratings and high numbers of votes. The same wouldn’t be said for their IQ. Arroyo shook his head gently and whispered, “Send in the clowns.” Well, if it wasn’t for them, people wouldn’t even bother watching the session. For the first time in history, Philippine politics became a showbiz-like entertainment show.

The Senate Star Dudes greeted the good senator Arroyo and the senate president as they went towards a corner of the hall, opposite Arroyo. Huddled as they laughed together, every now and then they would give a gracious glance at the crowd making brief eye-contacts with their female fans and some gay hopefuls as well.

As for the other members of the body, it’s always the same old story. Business as usual. In particular, those whose names are already established in their hometowns; those who names keep on appearing on the membership list for at least five decades.

They are not anymore bothered or threatened by Senate Bill 2649. Their families’ names in the Senate would live on for the next one hundred years. Lacson wouldn’t even think of filing another bill like the one he filed in 2007. They thought that his family might want to join this political orgy. And besides, almost everyone in the Senate is from a political dynasty, even the junior members.

They entered the hall one by one, with blank faces and minds filled with ideas, concepts, laws and projects that they plan to do. There’s no stopping them now. No more snooty old lady who would scrutinize their actions and bills.

Others, on the other hand, have no plans to pursue the bill filed by Miriam. It was time for them to start their own dynasty.

Villar was on his mobile phone in a contemplative and pious expression. From afar, one can make out the words “Miriam” and “thank you”. The fact is, he was talking to the woman who helped him during the 2010 elections and supported him by planning out strategies to defend him from false accusations of a delirious jealous woman in the name of Jamby Madrigal.

Arroyo’s mood brightened a little when he saw the fresh faces of the Cayetano siblings, Trillanes and Escudero. Youngbloods but definitely not incapable. In fact, they are very much qualified to their position unlike some other members of the legislative chamber. They may be part of a trapo culture and political dynasties but they are not thoroughly tainted by the hypocrisy of Philippine politics. There is still hope in a post-Miriam senate, he thought.

Pia Cayetano met Joker Arroyo’s sad eyes. Both paused for a moment. They seemed to understand each others’ feelings of loss and longing for the feisty Santiago. Pia gave a melancholic smile to her colleague and proceeded to her seat.

Pia, who was well prepared to defend the RH bill in that day’s session, pulled out all her notes and documents from her briefcase and placed them on her table. Then she pulled out a piece of paper from a notebook. It contained pointers from Miriam for the RH Bill debates. Dearest Pia. So informal, yet so insightful. She suddenly missed those hours of work and bonding between her and Santiago. In her fight to improve the lives of women in a macho and phallus-centered republic, Miriam was essential, unlike her other female colleague Loren Legarda, who was currently chatting with Drilon about some other matter.

The hall was gradually filled by reporters, journalist, private citizens, lobbyists, and finally the senators.

Arroyo looked around him. The whole scene looked absurd and chaotic despite the composed and formal appearance of everyone. The senate is now different. It was quite hard to say if it was better or worse than before.

“This session is now called to order.”, announced the senate president when he saw that everyone was already present. He banged the gavel. The show must go on. The Philippine Senate, with few geniuses and a myriad of one-celled amoebae, must go on.


2 comments:

  1. for me, miriam is the senator that works her ass.

    ang ibig kong sabihin ay parang sya lang ang senador na nagtratrabaho... yung iba... ewan. nakikinabang lang sa buwis ng pinoy

    ReplyDelete
  2. True... I will miss Miriam. Hopefully kung mag stay na siya sa Netherlands at makapunta ako doon ma meet ko siya personally.

    ReplyDelete

Sige, sakayan niyo ang trip ko....