Call from General Sandiko whom I last saw as a speaker at my farewell banquet March 5, 1921. He had been recently with Quezon to the United States on a mission presenting the Constitution to President Roosevelt, and had been “modernized.” Is now employed on the investigation of Friar Land disputes for Quezon. His points are to try to ascertain:
(a) Who will obtain the lands when the government buys the lot and sells in parcels; and (b) how accurate the books of the Friar’s agents are; whether the rents from aparceros are all entered as income; and he would also verify the sale of mangoes. The aparcero system is that the one who clears the land pays no rent for the first three years and then six pesos annually for five years. They often sublet for a share of the crop.
Call from Zosimo Fabella who was a boy when he accompanied us in 1921 on the Eastern Exporter to Colombo. Had since been many years in the United States studying at colleges there. Comes from Pagsanan–and says coconuts are now 15 pesos a thousand–were up to 19 a few weeks ago–9 pesos at this time last year; that they raise only one drop of rice a year, in spite of irrigation, because the soil is so poor (thru flooding)–as compared to that in Tarlac Where they get 60 cavans of palay per hectare per crop while in Laguna around Pagsanan they get only 30. Said that the people are now much better pleased with Quezon, especially because of such action as the dismissal of Judge Paredes and the resignation of his second a.d.c. Major Martinez of the Constabulary. He comes from Negros and is without promotion because he had begged to remain on leave longer with his family. The politicos sought to bring pressure on Quezon on his behalf, but in vain.
Fabella told me he had been president of the election board in Pagsanan during the presidential election last year, and that they had returned all except 20 of the 350 electors of his town as having voted (for Quezon mostly), whereas only about half of them really cast their votes. Said his justification was that they feared the election of Aguinaldo, “who would not make as good a President as the average high school boy.”
Pagsanjan had been the headquarters of the Constabulary all through the bandit campaign; Fabella thinks that the bandits would have taken eight months more to round up, if it had not been for their surrender. [That Cailles had not really helped at all–it was merely artful advertising on his part. That Cailles’ wife and a partner of hers owned the gambling business of Laguna province–bribed the police and stood off the constabulary]–that during the recent anti-jueting campaign by Quezon a few of the very many joints had been raided and closed, but would soon reopen. That Cailles’ wife had an income of 6,000 pesos a month from that source, and that jueting built their fine house in Dayap in which Cailles entertained us in the Autumn. Said jueting was conducted crookedly. It is a simple game with 37 numbers in a bottle. The players bet on a combination of any two numbers as they are shaken out of the bottle.
Says the Sakdalistas talk independence because it is the only real issue they have.