Showing posts from October, 2013

Massive queues at Manila train stations! #publictransport

The sorry state of Philippine public transport! Source:

A Singaporean's Point of View: Why the Philippines is a Poor Country

My take on the main reason why Singapore is rich and why the Philippines is poor is the rules that guide Singapore and the Philippines. Singapore started off as wilderness that was developed into a modern port. People were attracted here not merely because of its good location, but by other factors that most people tend to take for granted or outright ignore. What made Singapore different was that we were governed the British laws that offered protection, did not discriminate on race, religion or caste, ability to own property, and that if you worked hard, saved your money and started your own little business, you can get rich. Early migrants to Singapore also had the freedom to build their temples, churches, mosques, etc etc. Can you say the same for most other societies? The British gave these laws to colonies like Singapore and Hong Kong, in order to attract migrants to a nearly deserted territory. Such laws were not common in most parts of the British Empire. You will find si

Generalisations about Filipinos work even if they do not apply to all

There is no problem with generalizing if the generalization can be observed in the majority…it doesn't have to be all. The characteristics mentioned can be observed in all societies. The relevant point is to what degree they are common in other societies and within the Philippine population. Unfortunately observational and anecdotal evidence is all that is available rather than hard data. I have been a keen observer of my own country's character all my life. I haven't just accepted how my countrymen see themselves. Having lived in PH for 5 years my personal experience and observation can be summed up as: 1) a high level of narcissism. Probably developed in childhood by either being treated as a prince or princess or (ironically) being neglected. The evidence of the prince/princess treatment is everywhere and ranges from having a yaya to putting up billboard size displays congratulating someone for graduating. And a myriad of behaviours in between. You don't

Filipinos' romanticisation of rallies has devalued Ph #activism

There is a deeper malaise than the Filipino's inability to do some critical thinking or a failure to vote wisely. That being the case, neither course of action — (non-violent) movements and social media activism — will generate any significant result. In the Philippines, the holding of rallies and protest marches to draw attention to an issue is diminished in value because over the past 27 years, Filipinos have ROMANTICISED them. We've come to think of "People Power" as the "magic bullet" to effect change, with the expectation that transforming the nation will be instantaneous if enough people start marching in the streets. But you rarely see these people involved in the messy job of nation building afterward. On the other hand, social media activism isn't taking root in the Philippines the way it has in Europe, the United States, North Africa and in the Middle East if as you point out Filipino users insist on relegating Facebook to "happy

Filipinos don't want a better country #scrappork #porkbarrel

Another question is why are Filipinos only moving now to abolish PDAF and similar programs out there? PDAF has been around for a long time. I don't think Filipinos want a better country that bad so as to initiate actions to accomplish it. We all waited until the standard of living dropped over the course of time until we begin to feel the effects. Why didn't we have as many protests during the 90′s? Some may say we are better connected today and we can organize better. I say bullshit on that. We had TV, newspapers and radios long before social media. Besides, during the course of history we've seen how ineffective PDAF is. We know that projects sponsored by senators and congressmen are substandard. And we know for a long time that LGUs are the real implementors of projects so by that logic the funding should go straight to them. And of course we know politicians are robbing us are taxes. If you are being robbed you take action and go after the thief. I don't thi

Statement of Atty Ferdinand Topacio re alleged misuse of Malampaya funds #porkbarrel

STAMENT OF ATTY. FERDINAND TOPACIO, SPOKESMAN AND LEGAL COUNSEL OF FORMER FIRST GENTLEMAN JOSE MIGUEL ARROYO, ON REPORTS LINKING HIM TO THE ALLEGED MISUSE OF MALAMPAYA FUNDS. "Once again, the Aquino Administration is on a witchhunt, led by its Chief Inquisitor, the Secretary of Justice. And once more, it is once again making use of discredited methods of persecution such as innuendo, half-truths, convoluted logic and guilt by association, to pursue this nefarious end. "For the record, Atty. Jose Miguel Arroyo wishes to make the following of record, and invites anyone to check these facts for themselves using any means at their disposal: "1. Ruby Tuason is the estranged wife of his late first cousin, Carlos "Butch" Tuason, and therefore their relationship is one merely of affinity or law, and not of blood; "2.At the time the alleged transactions regarding the Malampaya funds are concerned, Ruby Tuason had been separated from Butch Tuason, who at t

Filipinos continue to fail to make a global mark and instead boast small-time 'achievements'

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