This is a mail from a stranger who is also fighting for the same cause like you do. I just discovered your site and I’m really impressed by your courage in saying what you think. Our difference is that I have given up lately our national politics and started focusing on the local politics of Bulan, a town in Sorsogon province, my little town. This may sound funny to you but I think we can solve the national political problems if we start from below, “from the bottom to the top” so to speak – beginning from the individual, the family, the neighborhood, the barangay and then the town. My logic is simple: If the people of Bulan would become morally strong and politically conscious then they would start electing good leaders, too. The town would become proud and progressive. And let us say if the rest of the 1, 529 towns (or municipalities) of the country would do the same, then we would end up having 1,530 morally upright and serious town mayors in all corners of the Philippines. Indeed, already a solid foundation for better provinces and cities. Following the equation we would end up with around 81 equally good governors, again already a good figure to start talking about national government and national political maturity.
Don’t accuse me of wishful thinking for it is not if we start from the bottom, from me and you and so on. It is more wishful thinking to attempt to change the national politics as it is now the way it was. No chance. Even if by a good chance an intelligent, educated, noble and morally upright person would become president for the next eight years, the Philippine society would never an inch be better because the foundation is still the same- weak and corrupted. After his term it would be mess again. A friend told me that the dream- of you and me- about a better, progressive Philippines would remain nothing but a dream and that we need to kill all the Filipinos first and start fresh ( innocent, pure, not corrupted ) all over again. I may add to his comment that indeed it’s a dream, but one that leads to a nightmare the moment you wake up! Anyway, I reflected upon his idea and said to myself, if I would take him literally, then my question would be : Who would start when there’s no one left? And soon I saw in my mind an empty Philippines, except for the flora and fauna left on their own and and the empty towns and cities and other infrastructures. Then I playfully thought, let the Japanese, Vietnamese, Germans or the Swiss occupy the empty land and let us see how it would go. Let’s take for instance the Swiss or the Germans for I know these people more. The Swiss when transplanted into the Philippines (without their money, start from a scratch, just their human resources), using the existing infrastructures of the Philippines would need about 20-30 years to build and transform the country into a first-world country, well managed and well-developed one, taking into consideration the time they would need to adjust to a changed environment and climate, to multiply themselves and fill up the land slowly (for they are roughly only 7 million in numbers) and the marine economy and its mangement experience they must first make ( for they don’t have oceans or seas ). And they would need time learning how to manage the abundant natural resources they now have and coordinate all these sources of production. In Switzerland you only have water as the most abundant natural resource, otherwise you just have the massive alps and a few acres left for the crop. But it’s in the human resources where their wealth reside. However, one thing is for sure: That within a year they would already have organized among themselves a stable and functioning government that’s there for the people and by the people in the truest sense of the word and- a year more or so- a functioning economy with an intricate banking system, watch and pharmaceutical industries, educational system, health care, insurances, etc. If applied to the Philippines, these 20-30 years would mean nothing but more miseries in all levels assuming people wouldn’t wake up and act and work together right now.
From this mental experiment going back to reality ( grim reality of Philippine society) to change the society from the bottom up will require generations, hence a lot of time, until we come up with a New Filipino, after all his poisoned mind and spirit had gone through layers of filtering and cleansing, equipping him at the end with a good moral make up, ready to apply what he learns, seriousness towards duty and responsibility, proud and conscious of himself. I wittingly excluded intelligence for we already have this resource from the beginning, only that our mind was and is easily corruptible due to lack of knowledge, self-esteem and self-respect. There are also Swiss or German people who have these deficiencies and Switzerland and Germany are far from being a perfect society , but they have these personal qualities that we badly need in the Philippines for us to be politically, socially and economically progressive. Don’t be impatient if this would require a lot of time, our dream becoming a reality only then by the emergence of that New Filipino we talked about. He would be “lucky” indeed but in him lies also the responsibility to retain what his ancestors had worked for. Not lucky was the New Society of Marcos in the 1970’s, for out of a corrupt intent he forgot his intelligence and behaved like a moron and came up with such an idiotic concept of changing the society forcefully from above and down to you and me. Clearly it did not function if seen from our honest intent for our country.But if by his concept of a New Society was based on himself as the New Filipino, the model of a corrupt politician and greedy New Filipino, then he had succeeded fully in changing the society from top to bottom, for after him it went downhill in everything about Filipino, a succession of corrupt presidents and corruptible population in the entire archipelago. Indeed, viewed from this angle he was very, very successful!
Back to our approach of changing also from the top to the bottom, I think it would require eternity, hence a dream that would never come true. We might as well shift our attention to what we as individuals can do to educate myself and yourself morally and politically and share our ideas with others. Forget Mrs. Arroyo’s monkey politics and the equally corrupt monkeys around her for awhile for it is a hopeless case. And let the Filipino suffer the consequences of their own corruptible character, ignorance and stupid choice. After all it’s them who sold their votes and placed her above themselves. Therefore, I think we are on the right side if we take the bottom-up -approach. There is no need to be discouraged even if it needs a lot of time and commitment and sacrifices of many , but do what is left for us, namely to continue working for this dream by thinking globally (nationally?) yet acting locally.
So keep going, and never give up.