We should not blame Representative Joe de Venecia for spilling the beans at the very last moment. The former Speaker is not known for his vindictiveness, and certainly, the only time I remember him shouting in the chambers of Congress was last night, as I sat there seeing someone facing the gallows.
By his own reckoning, by his own interpretation, by his own acts anyway, we can define that JDV is a classic politician -- an intelligent man who manipulated and used power to make everybody happy and ingratiate himself to his audience, but in the end, it was still the happiness, the satisfaction of the majority that mattered (of course, including the politician's own happiness).
Many are asking, "Why only now, JDV?"
JDV is, I say again, a politician of the classic mold, of the Political Science 101 sort. He naively believed that GMA could right the wrongs she and her allies were making. He naively believed that his colleagues would see the light someday, would steer Congress to the right path, and he, as Speaker of the House, would lead them, not as dictator, but one among peers -- primus inter pares.
We have seen dictators in other Southeast Asian countries make tiger economies of their dictatorships, but the Philippines have always suffered from greedy intellectuals like Ferdinand Marcos and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. We can surely blame JDV for naively hoping that Macapagal-Arroyo will take care of him out of gratitude; however, as her regime clearly manifests, Macapagal-Arroyo is no politician who uses power to make everybody happy.
She is the great dragon lady, the firestarter, the mother of all cowards -- just look at what she did when she married a scion of one of the country's oldest, richest, and nastiest landlords; just look at her alter egos as Cabinet secretaries, most of whom are former generals (makes me wonder whether GMA had harbored wishes to enter the Philippine Military Academy as a cadet... she wouldn't make it, anyway, considering her height); just look at her having three close relatives in Congress, two of them her own sons; just look at her lying straight-faced, saying "I'll never run for President," and "I'm sorry."
If there's any consolation to JDV's wails last night as he was being stabbed by his honorable "friends" by the ides of February, it is his grand act of standing by his son. In the first place, he could have told his son long ago to shut up, to go to Europe and keep a low-profile as ZTE constructed the NBN and Abalos enjoyed his millions.
There is so much to do for this country, JDV, aside from making circuitous routes to avoid assassins. Finish what you had begun, this battle of yours and of the people.