Puerto Rico's status is that of myth: a centaur, gryphon or manticore, neither wholly one thing or another, conceptual instead of actual and just as the mythos beings listed here, increasingly forgotten.
The commonwealth status is the near-stillborn child of the Popular Democratic Party (PDP), once again at this point, neither Popular nor Democratic, what with its past president Aníbal "The Jellyfish" Acevedo in federal court and looking whipped. Negotiated with the U.S. of part of A. by Our last (and only) great political leader, Luis Muñoz Marín*, this commonwealth thing he and his party thrust on Us has become a stultifying and scarring birthmark, and its party an irrelevant bunch of hoodlums.
(* That Muñoz Marín was a great political leader is not debatable. Here's the clincher: He walked away from power when it was his for the taking. He wasn't chased away by voters, kicked out by his party, arrested away or investigated away. He walked away on his own terms to make way for others. No one else in Our history can match his level of political performance and say the same. Case closed. But that doesn't mean he was perfect.)
The problem with the commonwealth status is that it makes Us and keeps Us a colony. That, too, is beyond debate. (You can debate it if you wish, but it's like debating whether the Sun is hot or cold. You can say "cold" 'til your toenails freeze, but that won't change the Sun an iota.) Because it makes Us and keeps Us a colony and this reality cannot be snowed under by torrents of words and snappy jingles, the PDP has opted for ignoring the issue, continuously thrusting commonwealth into the background, like the retarded child of first cousins. And by doing so, the PDP has lost its reason for existence and its relevancy.
In that sense, it has joined the former independence party in irrelevancy. The independentistas, smothered by the overbearing ego of their President-for-Life Rubén "Hot Air" Berríos, went from being a party centered on an identifiable concept for its existence to insightful critic of government processes to nagging cohorts within the government to outsiders leeching government funds. Their central message, their very reason to be in the voter's minds, was dropped when the torrents of words and snappy jingles could no longer hide the vast indifference and rejection their patriotic cause engendered. And thus they became irrelevant.
In the PDP's case, they have gone from political power to nagging cohorts without ever touching the level of insightful critics. Like fish who can describe everything in their world except water, the PDP swam through (and created ) so much of the sewers of government that they could never hope to be insightful critics, for that takes either an outsider's perspective or an objective sense of proportion.
Does that mean that statehood is the only option left for Puerto Rico?
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAhahahahahahahellno. Not while the Sun shines. What the PDP's irrelevancy means is that We are effectively living a one-party system, where one party can still espouse some core concept (even though it's akin to calling the Sun "freezing") while the erstwhile main opposition party can only wave its arms, stamp its feet and spout banalities while waiting--hoping--for the enemy to screw up so badly they get the revenge vote.
In other words, an ongoing festival of idiots battling idiots while slack-jawed idiots applaud "their" side as the nation drowns in idiotically-futile fervor pretending to be action.
But there is a silver lining to all this, yes there is: The spectacle is becoming more noticeably grotesque and at some point in the next few years, it might goad Uncle Sam(e Crap, Different Day) to just drop Us like an old newspaper into their choice for Our future.
That's not much of a silver lining, but given what We have now, I'll take whatever the hell We can get.
The Jenius Has Spoken.