During the campaign, and until now, there are still those among the critics of Duterte who believe with all their heart and what passes off as their minds that Duterte has an “army of paid trolls” that is somehow being managed from a central social media control center.
This idea came about simply because with all their money and supposed genius, the highly paid campaign strategists within the other political parties still cannot admit that their asses were whipped by ordinary Filipinos banding together against a system that it hates. In their pride, it has become much more acceptable for them to create imaginary giants, rather than accept that they were brought down by ants. Millions and millions of ants.
But just because they are down, it doesn’t mean that they are out. Far from it. The Liberal Party, led by its most vicious attack dog, Leila de Lima, still continues to fight the will of the people. Under the guise of protecting human rights, they are trying to destroy President Duterte’s standing among international leaders in a treasonous and traitorous attempt to have other nations intervene in Philippine affairs.
In this, she is ably assisted by the Liberal Party’s numero uno lap dog, Chito Gascon, who is using his position as head of the Commission on Human Rights for political sniping. Gascon was practically AWOL during the whole six years of his political master Aquino, but then all of a sudden is possessed with an almost demonic zeal to protect human rights now that they are out of power.
Complicit to the political farce that the LP is trying to pull are the media who have allowed themselves — witting or unwittingly — to be used as conduits for spreading anti-Duterte propaganda. Everywhere you turn, local and international news is dominated by the drug war narrative a presented by the President’s critics.
And in all this… mess, the Filipino people are left on their own to try and make sense of it all. The pros and the antis, the good and the bad information, the hateful talk from all sides, and the constant attempt by the Liberal Party to set a national agenda that clearly runs counter to what most people are feeling right now.
No wonder Filipinos are angry. Going back to the ant analogy, most of us just want to go back to work. We are happy with the way things are going. But if someone insists on kicking the anthill, then we will just have to fight back with whatever means we have — even if it is only to comment on social media.
And this brings is back to the monster that the Liberal Party feared during the campaign — and continues to fear until now. It is a monster that they themselves created by their continued dismissal of the people’s legitimate grievances. It is a monster born out of their inability to recognize their own failings, let alone apologize for them. It is a monster they allowed to grow with their indifference, arrogance, and stupidity.
Because they only saw the angry comments of the people as a campaign problem that needed to be solved so that their candidate would win, they ignored the fact that it was actually a reaction to a very real problem. The dramatic social changes being experienced by the Philippines right now is a direct reaction to the inability of the old social order to adapt.
While no one has yet called it so, what has happened and is still happening in the Philippines is in fact a revolution. And even as most of the battles have been fought online, with the anti-Dutertes having the more sophisticated weapons, those who support him will inevitably win with their passion, intensity, and sheer numbers. In this sense, the Liberal Party is partly right — there is an army of Duterte trolls out there. We’re just not getting paid.