OPINION | Epitaph 112: Controlling the narrative —politricking

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 POLITICS in its truest since is SUPPOSED to be all about “governing with checks & balances on the policies and the policy making process of the Legislature and the Executive Office.” 

But given the lack of any real “oversight” over the Governor WE the People just continue down Politricking Avenue only being able to figuratively watch the Governor and his GOP from the car manipulating virtually everything they can with their poli-tricks. As I read the story on our late Governor Froilan “Lang” Cruz Tenorio, I was anxiously anticipating to see who and what the Democrat Party would say but it didn’t happen literally leaving me speechless and in shock. But the GOP’s big advantage is the Governor has the STAGE & SPOTLIGHT in our Political Arena giving him full control of the many “NARRATIVES” (stories, issues & accounts) that evolve in our Commonwealth.

I was not a happy camper and nor were many Democrats to see the Governor and the GOP literally take the lead in recognizing the death of our late Democrat Governor Tenorio and this newspaper even helped them control the narrative. I’m sure even the late Governor would be disappointed that no Democrats were asked or allowed to comment on his passing as he was surely the last great warrior of the Democrat Party. I’m sure if the situation was reverse the Republicans would be complaining. But whatever happened to “fair & balance reporting” and I truly pray the editor will not let this happen again in our political arena and that the Democrat Chair and Democrats will be given a chance to comment as this paper is the closest thing to a referee and oversight FOR WE the People figuratively.  I can understand the Governor racing to be out front to announce his death but when the newspaper ended up ONLY interviewing Republicans about his legacy as a Democrat it was a bit tooooo much for me, a lifelong Democrat!  How that happened I don’t know but I hope and pray it wasn’t intentional but I do know that it proves how the perception of Democrats continue to be overlooked without consideration in our political arena which is WHY we have a dead Democracy and a corrupt government that needs to CHANGE!  I know being a Political Scientist that something like this could ONLY happen in the CNMI and places where the governor or a president controls the medica, the Legislature and most of ALL of the political, economic and even social narratives.

I told readers before that the Governor IS NOT dumb and he KNOWS how to “put-a-spin” on an issue he just can’t fool a real political scientist. The Governor KNEW that Governor Tenorio was the LAST Governor to have real fruitful years in office with our economy so what does he do, exactly what a good attorney would do when there is BAD news about their client, he “controls the narrative” by introducing it himself FIRST along with his emissaries which is a subliminal tactic to gain sympathy and support for being honest. I know judges, attorneys and people in the Judicial Branch are familiar with this strategy or tactic of “controlling the narrative” as it has proven to be affective, effective and even very successful.   The GOP could not lie about the great term of the LAST Democrat Governor so the next best thing was to claim credit for honoring him which was right, smart and the respectful thing to do. But the Democrats were left totally out-of-the-loop which begs the question “what was that reporter thinking” when he wrote the story on a Democrat — duh, that really contributed to politricking for the GOP when it should have been about exposing how BAD the politics of the GOP was that followed Governor Tenorio. It’s called politricking for a reason because it is literally “tricking the People” to think and support the Republicans, as they were soooo nice about our late Democrat Governor. But you can bet they won’t be singing that same tune of “fruitfulness under the Democrats” in November when they will have to convince voters otherwise.

What was so amazing to me was how ALL of the GOP and the Governor promoted the very SAME message like they had PLANNED their response, and maybe they did. The Governor knows he commands the full attention of the news and he uses it to his advantage like any Governor be they Democrat or Republican. But politricking is actually the Art of “manipulating, twisting and using things” to help one win that has worked for the GOP in the past and they continue to manipulate and promote their position with one trick after another. I am also starting to see evidence that some of the dissention or complaints about the Governor were actually STAGED so people will support certain members in the GOP in the Legislature and it works because I was FOOLED momentarily.

I’m not complaining so much about the Governor and GOP commenting and in fact I’m glad they did comment because they literally TOLD on THEMSELVES as failures for the past two decades after the last Democrat was in charge of our Government.  But it’s just beyond reasoning in the fact that the late Governor was a Democrat yet the Democrats weren’t even asked for a single comment which PROVES the Governor and his GOP Crew are controlling ALL the narratives of our politics turning them into trick political plays. I’m just thankful the Governor and his fellow GOP crew HAD TO admit how liberal and progressive the late Governor was which are still “trade-marks” of our Democrat Party today. So, if the people want to see the fruitful days we experienced under the late Governor then it should be obvious what voters need to do is elect Democrats, a simple solution to our complex problems of governing in the CNMI!

Hopefully in the next two elections voters will remind the Governor and his GOP Crew members that this is not their government. It’s our government. We don’t work for you, as you and your staff work for us. I am just keeping a vigilant eye on the activities of our Governor as a Founding Father Thomas Jefferson warned us that WE the People need to keep a vigilant eye on politicians when he wrote: “There is only one force in the nation that can be depended upon to keep the government pure and the governors honest, and that is the people themselves. They (the People) alone, if well informed, are capable of preventing the corruption of power, and restoring the nation to its rightful course if it should go astray”.  Thomas Jefferson gave us the solutions to our political challenges WE face today nearly three hundred years ago as the basis of Governing in America has never changed which is “BY consent of the People” so STOP giving the GOP your consent voters if you want a better government — it’s really that simple.

A keeper

The revelations about Marpi Development is also raising questions directly related to “oversight over the Marpi Project” thanks to Rep. Sheila Babauta, who is one of the GOOD ONES as she is a real “KEEPER” (woman/politician) — keep fighting Sheila sometimes winning takes losing first. When she questions the sustainability of Marpi Integrated Resort project she only got politricking answers that only placed the burden on ALL of us to support IPI but nothing to PROVE IPI can really deliver. The response didn’t offer any real factual evidence or data just political rhetoric which is WHY these Commissioners need to KNOW they work for the People, not IPI!!!  If IPI can’t deliver, it’s time to start talks for “changing the investor to an investor who can deliver” because if IPI breaches OUR contract just ONE MORE TIME we have the RIGHT just like any Bank to “REPROCESS in default of the contract” — it’s that simple.  I’m sure that “accountability with productivity” is how the majority of WE the People want our Commissioners to conduct OUR Business for OUR Commonwealth.

I think there is even a consensus in the community that Marpi is the “right place” but the problem is IPI is NOT the right investors for the present “place in time” to bring the CNMI some similarity of immediate completion and revenues. Rep. Babauta was soooo right about the project not being sustainable and the need for the CNMI to be more self-sufficient which is a lesson taught by this pandemic.  In fact, IPI has been trying to downsize the plan in OUR contract as they know they can’t even get it built mush less sustainable. The CNMI is already too heavily dependent upon Tourism and the economies of other countries. The Governor and GOP members unintentionally and subliminally made it clear in their comments about our late Governor that “We the People need Democrats who will follow the same thinking of our late Governor who was driven to fight for the People, to get things done and to expand our economic base beyond tourism.” Thanks Governor & GOP as Politricking will never create prosperity FOR the People but OUR saving-grace is electing the RIGHT Politicians — Democrats!  To be continued: One People One Direction 

PS: On behalf of my wife and I we offer our sincere condolences to the entire family of our late and great Governor Froilan “Lang” Cruz Tenorio, the only other Governor Immortalized while still alive in the CNMI with his “Walk-way” which speaks volumes about the Democrat Mentality of doing things FOR the People!

The writer is a resident of Kagman, Saipan.

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