16 June 2007

Not hypnotized, and not by the 'Budol-Bedol' Gang

SCHUMEY of Philippine Experience, I think, was the first to describe what's going on at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) as the handiwork of the "Budol-Bedol" Gang. In his entry last June 1, he said

So the Garci legacy continues! This time its Budol-Bedol and his gang of magicians. The COMELEC's mental state is now in question. The lieutenants of Garci have done their share, its up to Abalos to cover their tracks. Not only were the elections in Maguindanao stolen, the people were swindled by the Budol-Bedol Gang.
It's a word play on "budol-budol," which he explains parenthetically: "Budol-budol is a scam wherein a bundle of cash is padded with paper cut in the size of paper money. Only the exposed faces are genuine money and everything in between are just plain paper cuttings."

But there is one element which Schumey, I think, forgot to mention: the element of hypnosis. In most, if not all of the "budol-budol" incidents I've read or heard about, even the ones in Naga City, there is always some sort of mind control exercised by gang members on the hapless victim.

Consider the following example from Bacolod involving a 79-year old lawyer, as reported by Sun.Star:
(Luz Dato) Lacson was even puzzled as to why she was convinced by the suspects to get into their van. She later disclosed to the suspects her bank deposits at a bank in Lacson street.

It was as if she was hypnotized, she said. The suspects convinced her to take from the bank's safety deposit box her US$10,000, P65,000 and P2 million worth of jewelry.
But is the apparent hypnotic mental state that the Comelec now finds itself in the handiwork of the "Budol-Bedol" Gang? I don't think so, because it is not even hypnosis. Garci, Bedol, Abalos and his cohorts at the Comelec are actually complicit puppets in this game, having been captured by somebody else.

Their puppet masters at Malacañang have lost terribly in the last senatorial elections, but are still finding ways to kick out Pimentel and kick Zubiri into the 12th Senate seat.

This is what the hullabaloo on the fraud-tainted Maguindanao vote is all about; the senior citizens over at the Comelec en banc are only appearing to be hypnotized, like helpless preys in a classic "budol-budol," but are actually willing participants in this perfidy.

5 comments:

Prudence said...

I'm beginning to think that we should dissolve the present COMELEC and just establish new ones everytime we have elections. They're only useful when we have elections and these comes only every 3 years. What do they do in-between? Nothing. The commission just eats up the taxpayers' money for nothing.

Willy B. Prilles, Jr. said...

Hi Tess. With the Abalos Comelec that should be the all-time worst in our history, your proposal may be in order.

But I think Comelec's bigger challenge, aside from managing the conduct of orderly and credible elections, is continuing voters education, in partnership with civil society organizations.

That critical role may not require its current staff complement that may be adequate during elections, so its staffing needs to be reviewed. But somebody has to do voters education; otherwise the vicious cycle of trapos renewing their mandates through our elections will not be broken.

Dominique said...

Hi, Willy...long time no comment, just been quite busy lately. Thought I'd drop a note to say hi and to tell you that "Budol-Bedol" had me in a real Laugh-Out-Loud moment. Cheers!

Willy B. Prilles, Jr. said...

Hi Dom: You creative writing course must be the culprit. My wife, a high school maths teacher, had a good laugh when I told her about your Sancho Pancha post.

I guess your sister is not alone:)

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