STRIKE HOME|Twisting the news: who benefits and who does not?  

ONE DANGEROUS game that some news desks (print, TV and broadcast) in Manila have been playing is to deliberately twist the news at the expense of factual reporting.

In several instances, President Duterte has come out the whipping boy or at the receiving end.

The backlash that accompanied his advertence to Hitler in a press conference in Davao was typical of the twisted products that came out in print or in TV lately.

In that press conference, President Duterte alluded in part to Hitler in relation to his ongoing war against illegal drugs.

What was mystifying was that not a single reporter asked the President to clarify his statement that dragged the name of Hitler.  Was it an attempt to underscore a difference for obviously nowhere in that press conference did the President compare himself to Hitler?

Prudence dictates that in case of doubt, reporters should have sought clarification first before deciding to call it time to compose their stories.

No such thing occurred for in typical gangland fashion, the “cream of crop” that was tasked to cover the president took his statement at face value and went on to shoot from the hip and damn the consequences.

No sir. President Digong was not taken out of context as he complained time and again. His statement was deliberately twisted to earn high points for some media establishments on one hand and to deliberately embarrass the President on the other hand. That is plain as day.

The pattern stands out from Day 1.  Secretary to the Cabinet Leoncio B. Evasco is right:  Imperial Manila could not settle with the fact that a mere mayor from Mindanao is at the helm of Malacanang itself. It could not settle with the fact that Duterte has a mind of his own that figures out policies and directions opposed diametrically to its biddings.

This explains the almost non-stop effort (played out in the media establishments) to put him in a bad light at every turn.

It is desperation at worst but it is giving Duterte the black eye especially in the international media.  Who is benefitting and who is not benefitting?

In a Facebook post, I said it has nothing to do with journalism. I clarified that one way of putting it is that information has been deliberately twisted in a supposed bid to get “the story behind the story” as several news desks would put.

To Duterte’s pronouncement that American troops should stay out from Mindanao, some news desks deliberately twisted the information to mean he was asking them out of the Philippines!

To an expletive inserted in a statement that dragged the name of President Obama before Duterte went to Laos, the news desks were unanimous in saying that he called the American president “son of a whore.”

The list goes on. It is Duterte bashing time but to his credit the Filipino president was taking the assaults admirably, content on riding the waves, and occasionally, taking the media to task for “having their cakes and eating them too.”

The dislike for Duterte extends to their field reporters who are content on watching and listening to what comes out from his mouth, not on why he chooses to think differently and to talk differently.

It also does not help that the men around the President are clueless on how to stem the tide in his favor. For just as well because the President as himself is his own best   public relations guy. It is both his weak and strong point. Either you like him or you don’t and in the case of some media establishments, it is gloating time every time he is put in a spot.


By the way, the Chamber of Real Estate and Builders’ Assn. (CREBA) has announced that it is scheduled to hold its national convention in the City of Baguio on Oct. 12-14 at the CAP Center in Camp John Hay.

The CREBA said it has invited no less than President Duterte and Senate President Aquilino “Koko” as the main speakers.

Inquiries may be coursed to: or   (JKL)

Posted in Opinion