A social media info on Duterte

OFF TANGENT - Aven Piramide - The Freeman

I have been hearing about this internet baby called “social media” for quite some time now. So, in many previous articles that I wrote, I gratuitously took ideas authored by a multitude of differently minded personalities that were printed on this platform. But, in order to ascertain that my perception of social is not wayward, I recently scoured the net. Social media, according to the Internet, refers to the means of interactions among people in which they create, share, and/or exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and networks.

For this article, I focus on the “exchange of information” portion of the definition. Quite honestly though, I will take just one side of the exchange and perhaps in another column, I will write from the perspective of the other side. There are two intensely opposing groups of bloggers that are easily discernible. They talk everything about politics. In their unique style, they do not tell us the admirable traits of the supposed benefactors. Rather they exchange verbal attacks against the persons of their unfriendly principals namely President Ferdinand R Marcos Jr and past President Rodrigo R Duterte.

I am so amused by their “exchange of information” that I plan to continue monitoring them. The one thing good for me is that I am not inclined to either party. So, I do not get involved emotionally. I listen to them as objectively as I can even if I frown upon reading expletives. If I judge them this far, the bloggers on the Marcos side (and they identify themselves with their true names, talk with verifiable facts. On the other hand, those propagandizing for Duterte appear to hide their identities behind different aliases. Perhaps they feel confident that their identities remain blurred, they tend to post things that fact-checking, at times, reveals as untruthful.

There is one man among the corps of the Marcos-inclined bloggers who listed the “legacies” of Duterte. I read the list with immeasurable interest. The blogger was obviously full of sarcasm in using the word legacy because to me, he wrote down a litany of things the former president did bad or wrongly. There were more than ten such interesting items and I planned restate them here in this corner. But, when I looked again for the blog, I could not find it anymore.

Three of the “legacies” will go down in our history books as damning the presidency of Duterte. The first was the kind of friendliness he harbored for the Chinese that gave impetus to Communist China invade and seize some of the islands in the West Philippine Sea. The International Arbitral Tribunal ruled that these islands are within the Exclusive Economic zone of the Philippines. The error of Duterte in giving preferential treatment to China emboldened that communist country to violate our territorial integrity. The dreaded “war on drugs” which reportedly snuffed out the lives of thousands in extra judicial killings came as a second Duterte legacy. Unfortunately, while blood was shed illegal drugs blossomed.

The third legacy of Duterte came in the form of our national debt. The combined loans obtained by all presidents of the Republic post EDSA (1986-2016) put together could sum up to a figure smaller than our country’s indebtedness incurred by president Duterte. Differently said from President Cory Aquino, thru Ramos, Estrada, Arroyo and until Pinoy Aquino left Malacanang in 2016, the Philippine debt stood at over five trillion pesos. But when Duterte stepped down as president, our country’s borrowing zoomed to more than thirteen trillion pesos.

The purpose of social media being to exchange information, let us be truthful on the things we report.

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