By now practically everyone’s mind has been conditioned to think that an epic failure is looming for the May 10 elections, what with the administration continuing to drop hints of this possibility and the opposition adding fuel to the flames of suspicion. Three recent developments, occurring in rapid succession, have stirred up the latest national bout with paranoia, and all together they do add up to make a conspiracy a very valid theory.

First was the appointment of General Delfin Bangit as chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). A known ally of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s, Bangit’s promotion has stoked fears that he could be part of a plot to extend Mrs. Arroyo’s stay in office beyond June 30, when she is constitutionally mandated to turn over the reins to a new President. Bangit, after all, is a “mistah” of the President’s, being in the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) class 1978 which has adopted Mrs. Arroyo as its own and from which an unusually large number of members are currently holding top positions. This has led to suspicion that she wants to be surrounded by those she trusts in preparation for a paradigm shift of tectonic proportions. Continue reading

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