Buencamino writes political commentary for the NGO Action for Economic Reforms.

For all those who cannot “get” jokes without having the punch line explained to them, Randy David wrote a brilliant article, “Interpreting Conversations,” explaining why the taped conversations between persons who sound very much like Mrs. Arroyo and Comelec Commissioner Garcillano, are explicit enough as they are. According to Professor David, the voices sound like they were conspiring about something.

However, until Mrs. Arroyo and Garcillano admit the truth, no one can say for sure whose voices are on the tapes. All one can say is that one voice sounds like that of a male who used to worked closely with Leonardo Perez, the Marcos Comelec chief,  and the other sounds like that of  a short, power-hungry female related to some allegedly money-hungry mestizos.

Loyal supporters of Mrs. Arroyo say that she is not bothered by all the controversies raging around her. Proof of her unflappability is that Mrs. Arroyo went to Miriam Santiago’s birthday party in what one newspaper described as a “short black dress with a deep neckline.”  In addition, Mrs. Arroyo was accompanied by two of the main suspects in the raging jueteng scandal. Miriam commented: “Maybe that indicates that she was not overly concerned about the coup [plot] or what-have-you because she could pay that kind of attention [to her dress].”

And since Miriam is not known as a person who should be under constant medication, I can now rest assured that Mrs. Arroyo did not mean to cheat when she supposedly said, “Hello… Dun daw sa Lanao del Sur at saka sa Basilan, di raw nagma-match ang SOV sa COC” and “Garci” answered, “…Kasi, dun naman sa Basilan at saka Lanao Sur, itong ginawa nila na pagpataas sa inyo. Hindi naman ho, kwan… maayos naman ang paggawa eh.”  Mrs. Arroyo was probably just talking to her modista about dagdag to the length of her skirt and bawas to her neckline.

I know I can trust the truth will be revealed eventually. Some of it is already showing.

Raul Gonzalez, who headed the canvass committee that proclaimed Mrs. Arroyo the election winner, and who was subsequently appointed Justice Secretary, is surely a man of unquestionable integrity. He can certainly be trusted to lead an impartial investigation into the tape controversy. In a recent interview, he assured us all he would conduct a fair inquiry. He said:  “I am not a voice expert.. . But I will never admit that that is the President (speaking).”

Comelec Commissioner Benjamin Abalos, who certainly will not allow anyone to mess with elections asked, “Was it really illegal, or was it just immoral or improper? What law has the President violated?”  Oo nga naman, as long as it’s really legal, it’s okay for a President to engage in acts that are just immoral and improper. That’s a lesson I hope will be taught in every classroom and preached from every pulpit across the land. It’s important that we all know what truly matters in life.

Secretary Ignacio Bunye, the man who started the tape controversy, replied to renewed allegations of cheating brought about by the release of the tapes with, “We can answer that without referring to the tapes.”

PNP chief Arturo Lomibao, a man mentioned in passing in one of the taped conversations, added to the controversy by saying that one of former president Estrada’s beloveds paid for the tapes. Paid for the copy of a fake recording or paid for the copy of a real recording featuring a real Mrs. Arroyo and a real Garcillano? The policeman— who is also implicated in the current jueteng controversy— did not elaborate.

It’s time to put an end to all these conjectures, charges and countercharges. I will reveal the truth.

“Help me BECOME a good President.” That’s what Mrs. Arroyo asked of Garcillano, and that’s the truth. Now will somebody go and arrest her, please.