Saturday, June 11, 2005

Sun Tzu's Advice No. 2: "Ma'am, we need detailed plans"

Sun Tzu says, "With careful and detailed planning, you can win; with careless and less detailed planning, you cannot win. How much more certain is defeat if one does not plan at all! From the way planning is done beforehand, we can predict victory or defeat."

With the intelligence network firmly in place, the next priority for the Gloriagate Crisis Team is to come up with detailed plans. Sun Tzu says to win is to be able to subject the enemy to your will. GMA should be able to dictate the endgame of this affair. But to be able to do that, she has to know where to take it.

Erap's other mistake when he lost EDSA II was he didn't know where to take the crisis. As people converged in EDSA, he thought that it was best to let them be, for after all, he had the military with him. I remember Ernie Maceda, then ambassador to the US, predicting on primetime tv that the EDSA II crowd would get tired and soon go home. He also predicted a reconciliation with Erap. Of course, the EDSA II leaders had better foresight. They knew that Angie Reyes and Orly Mercado were the swing votes, and the best argument to win over the two was the swelling crowd in EDSA. That is why it was a blunder for Erap to have allowed the EDSA crowd to grow. Today, the GMA police is doing its job right by sweeping the crowd gathering in front of San Carlos Seminary and making sure it doesn't grow. They say it is necessary to prevent traffic build up, but of course, it clearly has a double purpose.

Yet, this crisis is not going to be won only by keeping the Edsa crowd in San Carlos in check. The plan has to be detailed enough to follow on a minute by minute basis. Clearly, Samuel Ong has to be smoked out of his cave. For as long as he is able broadcast from it, he is a serious threat to GMA. Plan A should be how to neutralize him from there, and diffuse this crisis altogether. Perhaps, they can do a check on Sammy Boy. Is he a nut case? Does he have a history of hallucination? What would it take for him to shut up? Money? A position in the UN? A simple sorry? What did it take for Udong Mahusay to recant? Will it work with Sammy Baby? Whatever it is, Sammy Boy has to be contained.

Plan B is the exit plan. This is the more important plan that Erap should have done before he stepped down. Somebody should at least draft the text of the presidential pardon for the next president to sign in the remote event that GMA has to go. Nixon had one when he resigned at the end of the Watergate Scandal. And if Erap had one before he left Malacanang, instead of languishing in jail like a common criminal today, he should be enjoying his Petrus wines in his Boracay Mansion with Laarni and kids.

Two words, Ma'am: detailed plans.

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