Speak softly but carry a big stick

By Alex P. Vidal

“An ounce of performance is worth pounds of promises.”— Mae West

UNLIKE the first marching orders of Police Brigadier General Jack Wanky, Police Regional Office (PRO) 6 acting regional director, for cops to run after illegal gambling operations when he recently assumed office, Wanky’s boss, the 30th chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), Police General Rommel Francisco Dayleg Marbil, did not issue a specific order for the 228,000 police personnel all over the archipelago to go after illegal gambling in his recent press conference.

Marbil, in fact, did not want the PNP to declare a “war against illegal drugs” because, he said, they are supposed to fight illegal drugs anyway; it is part of their job.

Marbil was speaking softly but must be carrying a big stick, with reference to Harry S. Truman’s famous battlecry.

The PNP top boss has a point. Police aren’t supposed to telegraph their punches or pick what campaign to launch and which enemy to tackle.

As long as peace and order is being threatened; as long as illegal operations and lawless elements are active and throwing their weight around, police are obligated to take them down and throw at them the books and marshal the full force of the law.

It will serve them best if the police will let their operations and accomplishments speak for themselves.

Ralph Marston once said, “Don’t lower your expectations to meet your performance. Raise your level of performance to meet your expectations. Expect the best of yourself, and then do what is necessary to make it a reality.”


Wanky, who assumed as PRO6 acting regional director on Feb. 19, 2024, particularly directed all city and provincial PNP chiefs to create task groups for a focused campaign against unauthorized games in the region.

“They will be expecting a lot of operations until such time that this menace will stop. We will not stop until they stop,” vowed Wanky, referring to “bookies” who were the subjects of complaints from Small Town Lottery (STL) operations.

Weeks after he made the warning, Wanky repeated his imprimatur for regional cops under his wings to make a hardline stand against illegal gambling specifically.

Which prompted us to make the following questions: how about the campaigns against illegal fishing, illegal drugs, illegal logging, gunrunning, human trafficking, carjacking, riding-in-tandem hired killers, and other cyber crimes?

Why only illegal gambling? And with special preference to STL and the “bookies”?

To recall what General Marbil had emphasized, isn’t it part of the PNP’s mandate to fight illegal gambling per se just like the campaign against illegal drugs and all other illegal activities in the Philippines?


SHORT PENIS. An adult gorilla’s penis is only 2 inches long. From now on let’s be kind to gorillas because of their limited “happiness.”

THEY ARE HEALTHY. Foods and nutrients that can lower our cholesterol naturally: Activated charcoal, barely, carrots, chromium, corn bran, cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower), eggplant, evening primrose oil, fenugreek seed, fiber, garlic, ginger, lemon grass oil, soybeans, yogurt, red pepper, onions.

DISHABILIOPHOBIA is the fear of undressing in front of someone: In the first place, who would have the guts to undress in front of someone? Even some couples possess this fear. Undressing in front of a mirror is even nerve-tingling!

INFAMOUS SEVEN. The seven cardinals of the Roman Catholic church who falsely condemned Galileo Galilei in the Holy Inquisition were F. Cardinalis de Asculo, G. Cardinalis Bentiuolus, Fr. Cardinalis de Cremona, Fr. Antonius Cardinalis S. Honuphrij, B. Cardinalis Gypsius, Fr. Cardinalis Verospius, M. Cardinalis Ginettus.

BAD NEWS AND GOOD NEWS. How common is a brain aneurysm? Research says many people have them — up to 4 percent have it at autopsy (meaning sure death), but many show no symptoms. About 5 percent of people will reportedly develop a brain aneurysm during their lifetime, but only about 10 percent of them will experience a rupture. In other words, there is a big chance of survival — if we don’t belong in the 10 percent! If this happens, the trip to Kingdom Come will be suspended if not canceled!

(The author, who is now based in New York City, used to be the editor of two daily newspapers in Iloilo.—Ed)