Management by stupidity (Part II)

With all the issues about corruption now swirling around City Hall, a lot of people are feeling frustrated that little effort has been made by the city leadership to answer them point by point to erase any doubts in their minds. For six months now, the propaganda machine of City Mayor Jed Patrick E. Mabilog has focused its efforts on trying to destroy the names of media personalities who are in the forefront of these exposes. Their strategy is simple as it is stupid: paint Mabilog’s critics as evil, and the issues will vanish from the public consciousness.

This is a classic example of a beleaguered leadership unable to extricate itself from the quagmire of rottenness. Its actions demonstrate its desperation to survive the endless onslaught of exposes. Cornered, its propagandists can only put up a smokescreen in the hope it can buy time to elude the issues. Unfortunately, the issues won’t go away, and more people are waking up to the ugly picture of a corrupt city government.

Mabilog hasn’t helped his own cause. In fact, he has only succeeded in sinking himself deeper in the quicksand. First, he betrayed his lack of knowledge and understanding of his work as local chief executive. Second, he complicated the situation by refusing to remedy the situation by avoiding being trapped by the scandals. Rather than flee from the scandals, he waded deeper into the muck, thinking he can out-duel his critics in a word war.

Basically, it’s Mabilog’s acts of stupidity that is causing him to self-destruct.

As it is, there’s an increasing clamor for performance, and Mabilog has nothing to show after more than a year in office. He has a long list of impressive-sounding plans, but scores “zero” on implementation. When he assumed office on June 30, 2010, he boasted about the completion, and inauguration, of the City Hall by the time the city government marks its 74th Charter Day anniversary. That didn’t happen. So many of the things he promised didn’t happen.

Why has this been so? Because Mabilog’s style is management by stupidity.

He thinks he can always spin stories around people to create a positive image. He’s forgotten that credibility is a major commodity for leadership. Each time he makes a promises he doesn’t keep, a chip falls from his bank of credibility. This is such an elementary act of stupidity for a leader. As a result, it hasn’t taken long before his own image was destroyed.

Mabilog has singled me out as one of his detractors. He doesn’t know it, but he is his own worse enemy. If I have an arsenal of issues about him, it’s because he’s made so many stupid mistakes. He is breaking apart by his own wishy-washy decision-making and double-talking. I am only a messenger of the truth.

It’s obvious Mabilog feels the impact of these issues, because he is expending so much energy and resources just to hit back at me. Again, this is an act of stupidity. He should really spend more time telling the people the truth rather than send a band of goons to rough me up. As the saying goes, don’t shoot the messenger.

How far can this kind of management by stupidity go?

Halfway into his first term, Mabilog has become a lame-duck. With a heavily-bruised face after the series of scandals that hit him, he is becoming more afraid to do anything. His latest actions show a badly-shaken individual who has lost his confidence in trying to mislead people. He knows his old techniques are now worn-out. He hasn’t achieved momentum. He has fallen short, far too short, on delivery. He needs a new bag of techniques to survive.

Will Mabilog be able to recover? Only he can answer that. But it will require a major overhaul of his management style. He will have to invest in rebuilding his tattered credibility. He will have to regain the confidence of the people. And he will have to achieve that ability to get good advice from well-meaning people, not only from those who lick his ass.

In short, he should stop being stupid.

About Manuel "Boy" Mejorada
Manuel "Boy" Mejorada is a journalist and social media activist. A former Iloilo provincial administrator, he is now waging a crusade against corruption and narco-politics.

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