August 29, 1970
The Daily Mirror (most of the wise coffee-shop habitues call it the Daily Error) headlines that Sen. Lagumbay is being punished by me for refusing to sponsor tax measures – which is completely false as the truth is this is a Senate matter triggered by the newspapers and taken over by the Perez committee. I could not in conscience do anything but authorize the BIR to reveal his name.
Now Aytona is caught in a bind for conflict of interest.
The PNB Union and PAGE (Phil. Association of Government Employees) are also threatening a strike or demonstration.
They could not come at 6:30 PM and so I meet them at 12:00 noon tomorrow.
Played golf early in the tournament at Bonifacio to raise funds for the watering system.
Came back to the Palace in a hurry to catch the Ilocos Norte mayors and delegation being briefed by Imelda on their program for me on Monday, the eve of my birthday celebration. Retreated when Imelda shooed me away.
Inaugurated at 5:00 PM the CAA-PAF management operation and information center. Gave a plaque of appreciation to Gen. McNickle of the 13th Air Force USAF for the help like the radar we are using at MIA now, electric generators after the earthquake, etc.
Have just arrived from Sec. Romulo’s house at Forbes Park where the cabinet tendered me a dinner for my birthday celebration on the 1st of September.
He had been able to collect an impressive collection of cablegrams from heads of state and heads of government. Although this message-sending is a yearly occurrence.
Dinner was up to 10:00 PM – then a reception and dance up to 12:15 AM.
This is a tradition I hope will be followed throughout the years as a President must depend for success upon his cabinet.
We also had the first picture taken of the cabinet with me (only the Vice-President was absent).
I am getting all the cabinet men to work. As I said in my response to Sec. Romulo, there is one basic difference between the cabinet of Pres. Quezon and my cabinet and that is that Quezon’s cabinet was composed mostly of political kingpins while my cabinet is composed of technocrats mostly without political backing.
I also announced the policy of more autonomy for bureau directors and department heads as well as the objective of establishing a civil service that can operate efficiently without the intervention except on basic policy of an elective legislature or even the President or department head.