June 25, 2016

ThinkingPinoy should not be in Malacañang

I woke up from general anesthesia at 4:00 PM of 09 May 2016. At last, my trusty surgeon finally excised a severe perineal infection that’s been bugging me for weeks. I should have undergone surgery weeks earlier but I chose to postpone it because I had something more important to do.

Well, that’s what you get from sitting in front of a PC for 17 hours a day for three straight months. But it’s not like I had any other choice. Big Media was ganging up on my bet, and the least I can do is provide information that The Establishment deliberately ignores.

There are lots of people out there who are way smarter than I am. Too bad they’re not on my side.

Before the 9th

In a desperate bid to bring the frontrunner down, a noisy senator suddenly came up with an exposé, alleging Duterte amassed billions’ worth of ill-gotten wealth. Overnight, hungry wolves from the yellow, orange, and (sky?) blue camps dove in for the kill. Some supporters started doubting him: with such a shocking revelation, who wouldn’t be rattled?

I saw major loopholes in what little evidence Trillanes provided. I saw that it was problematic at best, totally fabricated at worst. I had it all in my head and I had to tell everyone about it, but explaining it would take time.
I requested my doctor to postpone the surgery and prescribe painkillers for the meantime. And there I was, writing #BangkoSerye, hoping against all hope the people will listen to what I had to say. The pain killers barely worked, and I was writhing in pain almost every other minute, while I faced a real risk of death from septic shock.

After crusading for almost half a year to get votes for my “manok”, there I was on a hospital bed, unable to vote. I just tried to find solace in the hope that I was able to sway even a few thousand of the five million who got to read my blog that month.

Evening of Election Day, I grabbed the remote control and turned the TV on. I saw Duterte leading by a mile. I heaved a gigantic sigh of relief.

I told myself, “TP, you’ve done your job. You’ve helped this country. It’s time to get some rest.” After spending tons of money, enduring countless sleepless nights, and suffering heaps of insults from my peers, I felt that at last, I can leave my blog and move on with my private life.

After the 9th

But it didn’t happen. There were just too many issues that I cannot ignore: the Hash Code scandal, the tardy SOCEs, the Senate Presidency bitch fight, the shady 700 MHz deal, the list goes on and on.

Then an idea struck me: Why not work in Malacañang?

With more resources at my disposal plus the extra street cred, I felt that I can do more for this country compared to remaining as a pseudo-anonymous blogger. So I gave it a shot. I submitted my resume to several incoming Malacañang officials. Luckily, one of them noticed me (Secretary X) and his assistant (Secretary Y) invited me for meeting with Secretary X.
It was 22 June 2016, I arrived at the designated meeting place five minutes ahead of schedule. That’s just about right. Unfortunately, both Secretary X and Secretary Y were in a very important meeting so he they had to let another assistant, Secretary Z, interview me instead.

I am not some self-important bastard. I understand that their meeting is more important that my application. It’s okay.

Secretary Z and I sat down, and the interview commenced.

As I sat on my chair, I told myself, “Okay, this is it. Kick ass, TP!”

The Interview

Secretary Z asked the first question and I started to answer.

As I was in the middle of the sentence, I noticed his eyes started to wander towards someone at my back, which turned out to be a group of presumably Malacañan people. I didn’t take offense, as his courtesy to his colleagues is a good thing.

He, however, did this several more times, but nobody was around us anymore, suggesting that I am saying something really idiotic, or he’s plain uninterested in this applicant. But I still gave him the benefit of the doubt. I told myself, “Maybe he’s just stressed out with the inauguration and all that.”

Then he asked me, "Tell me, what can you do for us?"

That is the last thing any self-respecting job interviewer should ask because it is not only condescending but also reflective of the interviewer's ineptitude.

Secretary Z, the answer to that is in my Curriculum Vitae, the same thing you should have read before this damn thing started.

But I kept my cool, and provided the answer he expected.

By the end of the interview, Secretary Z still hasn’t given me his full name, so I felt the need to ask.

I said, “What’s your name?”

Secretary Z simply smiled. He refused to answer.

Secretary Z deems that I, a mere earthling, wasn’t worthy to know the poetry that is his name.

I am ThinkingPinoy, one of the best dirt diggers in the country today. Luckily for some camps, I am not the vindictive type. Because if I were, then I would have battered a veteran journalist with Magdalo links to a point where she would have said goodbye to her illustrious decades-long career.

True enough, I went online and found everything about him in a span of one hour.

Not for Malacañang

I personally have nothing to gain and a lot to lose if I work in Malacañang. For the next six years, I will be paid less than half of what I normally get. For the next six years, I will have to live separately from my partner because the salary wouldn’t even cover taxi fare. For the next six years, I will be inside the snake pit that is Philippine Government.

Juxtapose that to the quiet, peaceful, private life I had before ThinkingPinoy. The same thing I wanted to have after May 11th. But I told myself, “Screw personal interests. I love my country.”

But then, that fateful interview brought me to a realization, a realization that some Duterte supporters, after the unlikely win, have become intoxicated with power. Take Secretary Z, for example. He is just an assistant of an assistant of an assistant secretary, yet he believes his position to be so important that even his name should be considered classified information.

Despite being flabbergasted by Secretary Z’s arrogance, I am confident that most people in the incoming Duterte administration have a sincere concern for the common people.

Nevertheless, I felt that it’s better if I remained to be an outsider with independent views and opinions. I felt that more than just elucidating complex issues for the benefit of the common tao, I should also use this platform to criticize the Duterte administration whenever necessary. And that includes officials who feel a sense of entitlement, the same kind of people that Duterte himself detests.

That is something I cannot do if I work in Malacañang, as it would be a classic case of conflict of interest.

With that said, I would like to let my readers know that I have changed my mind about working in the palace. Note, however, that they have not even given me a job offer. It’s just that regardless of whether they want me in or not, I will choose to remain in the private sector.

After all, even if I support our new president, my loyalty is reserved solely for my countrymen. It just so happens that the interests of my countrymen align with his, for now.

I need to stay outside Malacañang so I can still criticize those inside it.

And for a second, I wondered, "Is Secretary Z's 'assholery' attributable to Rappler's grudge against me? (See below)"
Regardless, I will not reveal Secretary Z's name. I want him to have the opportunity to change for the better, for this country's sake.

Secretaries X and Y are good people. I have nothing against them.

But Secretary Z, please remember that you are a public servant.

Now, I suggest you start acting like one. (ThinkingPinoy)

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