Three options for Philippine citizens

Philippines Election

Philippine citizens voting


by josephivo


Who to vote for? How to reduce the victim mentality and build confidence? Dynasties? A free and thriving Philippines?

Important questions, but two higher questions should be answered first. Just as Lenin always asked ironically: “Freedom — yes, but for whom? To do what?”, we could ask “For what Filipinos? To achieve what?”

Let’s also look at what others did and do when we try to answer these two primordial questions.


Aristotle in the 4th century BC said that man is a “ζώων πολιτικόν” (zoon politicon or political animal), meaning that we are determined by the group. A baby growing up on an island, totally alone, will never know who he is. We are what we believe others think we are. As a consequence, we can improve if either we change ourselves or if something changes in the way others perceive us.

The social group around us was and is therefore important, not only for survival, but also for our individual identity. At the beginning, these groups were small and 100% self-sufficient in economic, emotional, religious and cultural terms, all structured within a few close families. Let’s stick together to plunder our neighboring tribe, or let’s extend solidarity beyond our families, or let’s optimize our economic interactions and increase specialization. The pecking order in these groups was simple and unique.

Gradually, groups interacted more, specialized more, super-groups and alliances originated, and pecking orders became more complex and formalized. (A similar evolution can be seen in the development of the internet blogosphere.)

Today, a lot of people are part of many different groups depending on the spheres of life: a religious group, an economic entity, a cultural organization, a political party . . . the pecking-order can be different in all these different groups.

3- WHAT IS A CITIZEN? Or sovereignty revisited

At one point, nations became an important type of group in defining citizens. A little history from a European viewpoint:

The Greeks had an easy definition of citizenship. A Greek citizen was someone born from a Greek father. All others were barbarians. As they grew into an empire, this became their weakness, the lack of sufficient Greeks to keep control. The Romans had a better definition, it linked citizenship to duties and it delivered rights, 12 rights that could be acquired one by one, 12 levels of citizenship, the same all over the empire, globalization at its best. In the era of the Kings, the King defined sovereignty and nationality depending on his possessions. Subsequent Kings ruled absolute in all spheres of life. Even bishops and Popes got pushed aside.

In 1581, with their “Plakaat van Verlaetinghte” or the Act of Abjuration, the 17 Provinces of the Low Countries defined that the alliance of citizens should no longer be to a King but to the people themselves. They had a history of wealthy cities with many rights and privileges, but now the citizens from Flanders, Brabant, Wallonia and Holland became fully sovereign. (Very similar to the American Declaration of Independence 200 years later.) During the French revolution, when the Kings’ heads were cut off, the people of France, Spain and Portugal became sovereign, too, as did some individual German and Italian states. The nation as the totality of citizens and the people as inhabitants of a country became the same. Later, peoples with the same language or culture that did not belong to a single nation had their freedom fights, too, to acquire nationhood: Ireland, the one German speaking state, the Italian state, the Kurds, the Palestinians, the Moros . . .  The nation belonged to the people, no more to the “owner” king or the colonial masters.

Chinese authoritarianism


But who are the people? Who is in and who is out? Who is citizen, who is foreigner, who is immigrant and what about the emigrants? Who share the rights, who contributes, has duties? (The right to vote, right to immunity from deportation, right to re-enter one’s country, right to register children as citizens, right to seek employment by the government, or in the armed forces . . . The duty to obey the law, pay taxes, provide for a common defense, to vote, serve on a jury . . .) With whom to share solidarity? What are entitlements, based on what and what are obligations, what roles we have to play?

The answers became complex. Today, citizens have a large collection of affinities. Some supra-national, as to Human Rights, to ASEAN . . .  some sub-national as to Bangsamore, Ilocos . . . my city, my barangay, my subdivision . . . or to my sport, my religion, my cultural affiliation. Duties and rights are no more defined one on one by the Sovereign. But, for some, today’s world is too complex, so they prefer only one affinity, e.g. to the God they submitted to, and therefore they want to unify all powers in the hands of God’s representative, the ayatollah, the caliph . . .

Also, solidarity became more complex, more institutions provide/require solidarity than just the family and the state. Churches, insurance companies, unions, neighborhoods . . . organize solidarity.

In all, religion is often used as just an instrument, an indicator of our collective identity, more than the experience of the Supernatural.


What does it mean to be a Filipino citizen? Filipinos are all over the citizen development scale. A lot are still at the raiding level of the hunter gatherers and early farmers. Many are on a “Barangay” level. Some feel as if they belong to a provincial king. Only a few believe that they own the Philippines, that they are sovereign (except when they dry rice on the main road). The Philippines as a life-organizing entity is far away and weak for most Filipinos. The feelings of rights and entitlement differ, of duties even more.

How to deal with class E and class D people whose focus is only on survival? They are the majority but don’t experience sovereignty. Democratically they should own the country. How to organize equal representation of the majority, the people of the slums, the fishermen, the sari-sari owners, the farmers, the helpers, the tricycle drivers (and not via a Mikey Arroyo)? How to deal with the more than 12 million emigrants, one third of the consumption power but not one third of the voting power? What are their rights, their duties? And the immigrants living and contributing here half a lifetime?

The forces of social apartheid are comparable to the forces of racial apartheid in South Africa. The haves are full citizens, the have-nots second class people. Don’t the blacks still feel victimized too?

People in imperial Manila identify themselves stronger as Filipinos citizens, for the rest the Philippine citizenship is less formal.

A good indicator for citizenship is solidarity. Who wants to pay, who wants to do an effort for whom? Who wants to pay for infrastructure works where? Who wants to pay for schooling in Tagalog and English? For local security? For national security? For health services? Solidarity for my family — 100% yes. The barangay — the % is down.

National–??? One’s answer on ??? indicates how strong ones Filipino citizenship is.

American industrialism



Recognize the past first. It defines us as an onion, Independent, American, Spanish, Arab, Hindu and the South East Asian core. Dream of the future, e.g. at 2046, after 100 years of full independence.

5.0- The zero option.

180 million Filipinos in 2046. Poverty everywhere. The last fish in Filipino waters was caught 5 years ago, the last tree cut some years earlier. Food mostly artificial rice with salt and sweeteners. Life expectancy down. Economy reduced to the remittance of 30 million OFWs. Import and smuggling of 2nd hand clothing, cars, electronics . . . still thriving. Walls around the wealthy subdivisions doubled in height, security guards with machine guns. Traffic in Metro Manila only on exclusive, expensive skyways, all other roads plugged into one giant traffic jam. Squatters have taken over even Luneta Park and the main boulevards. The Supreme Court overruled once more its previous opinion on the constitutionality of the RH bill. Binay’s clan is still in full power, his national free cake business booming. The Philippines is the international example of a failed state.

Or . . .

We could copy what other do. In today’s world, three competing options are available: Asian capitalism with authoritarian political structures, American brutal neoliberalism or European social-oriented society.

5.1- Asian capitalism with authoritarian political structures. No democracy needed to grow.

All the freedom of the world but no rice, or all the rice of the world but no freedom? For the people starving the answer is easy. An authoritarian leader can decide faster what is good for the citizens and at Maslow’s basic need level the needs are straightforward. Real democracy and individual freedom can come later. (Maslow’s 5 levels: basic needs such as food and shelter; security or the guarantee that basic needs will be fulfilled tomorrow; social needs or belonging; recognition needs or being someone of importance; individual realization needs or the possibility to do what you are, what you like to do)

5.2- American brutal neoliberalism.

Freedom, what people want in life is individualized and privatized and it became apolitical . . . an evidence.  Freedom is the evident highest good. A great environment for capitalism; everything can eventually be commercialized.  Individualized hedonism mobilizes people and it transforms people into workaholics. Easy sells: sweet, fast beats, sound bites, fast colors, sexy, a miracle God . . . Group responsibilities are for later such as obesity and other medical costs, environmental damage, inequalities and poor education (for the masses) . . .

5.3 European social democracy

European socialism


Collective action prevails over individual consumption. Equality and fairness for all. Not all have the talent and connections to become president, but all have equal rights to live a decent life. Solidarity. Gains in personal freedom should not mask the loss of social freedom. The development of a general will, Rousseaus’ “Volonté Générale”, towards an ideal society. If the others improve they can value me better and I will be better because others have the proficiency to see the real me.

Our wealth should be more than money and what money can buy. The wealth of watching a sunset, the wealth of seeing children play, the wealth of living in peace with the environment, the wealth of sharing one’s blessings, a good conversation, admiring art, meditation and inner silence, mystical or religious experiences . . .


Some suggestions, not necessarily in order of importance:

6.1- The transition from victims with self-inflicted immaturity to self-determination will require political parties to make a choice between path to aim for, 1, 2 or 3, to select their target audience and to come up with specific comprehensive positive visions.

6.2- New politicians able to switch from a “They Culture” to a “We Culture”. From “THEY caused the problem out there, THEY have to be punished, we’ll find out” to “the problem is ours, here in congress, what did WE do wrong as legislators that this could happen, how can WE prevent it?”

6.3- The array of options within which we can live out our individual freedoms needs to be redefined, more than consumption and malls. Unbridled individual hedonism should not be the only future even if it is the easiest to create economic growth.

6.4- Different sections of Filipino society might need a different approach. Maslow explained where the different needs are (see above at 5.1).

6.5- Overall solidarity with those struggling. Trickle down economics are not enough. President Kennedy told us that when the water rises all boats rise, but some boats here are leaking so badly that more bailing isn’t possible; they are doomed to sink. Break the perpetual inheritance cycle of poverty. It will need political courage to provide food, shelter and education to all children who will miss the boat without it.

6.6- Establish what the Germans call a “Leitkultur”, a higher leading culture that regulates the way in which the subcultures interact. What is the quintessence of being Filipino, what gives strength, something to relate to?

6.7- Dare to formulate the ideal but also indicate the first (baby-?) steps to get there. Translate all in an understandable language and communicate, communicate, communicate while improving (or creating) all communication channels: via school education, traditional media, social media, one on one conversations . . .

6.8- Measure and report more than GDP, e.g., time spent watching a sunsets or playing with children, reforestation, carbon emission, bio-diversity, beneficiaries of philanthropy, conversation topics, exhibitions, concerts, meditation centers . . .

6.9- Create and promote new heroes: scientists, innovators, captain of industries, start-up business stars, fiesta organizers, architects, successful cooperatives and farmer unions, philanthropists . . .


188 Responses to “Three options for Philippine citizens”
  1. PinoyInEurope says:

    Josephivo, many thanks, great article. Two quick comments, gotta go soon:

    1. There are already attempts to establish a Filipino Leitkultur, a leading culture, a sense of we. It is called pantayong pananaw, an intellectual movement whose founder and leader is – my father. It is already part of the curriculum of many universities, at least in history. Many students though are annoyed by the long and convoluted sentences of my fathers writings and those of his followers, although some like Prof. Atoy Navarro are concise. My father who always told me to “summarize, summarize, summarize” hehe but did not always practice what he preached, well I have the same weakness as him at times, being too verbose. It takes longer to write shorter and I guess my father felt he did not have enough time to come out with his ideas.

    2. Philippine culture is partly Eastern, partly Western. A mixture of 5.1 and 5.3 would be the best. Which is why I posted a lot on Turkey in Joe’s numbers blog, because Turkey is Eurasian.

    Well I am Eurasian so maybe that is why I like Istanbul, but that is another story.

    P.S. I am putting on mail notifications now, so I feel how it is. And so I don’t post too much.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Authoritarian social democracy. Not to be confused with National Socialism.

      More like the system of Turkey, or like the Bavarian system promoted by its ruling party, the Christian Social Union – conservative, technocratic and for competitive equal opportunities.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Since complete socialism does not work, people by nature being lazy and needing a competitive kick in the backsides, both Turkey and Bavaria have neoliberal elements in their system – controlled and channeled by both soc-dem and authoritarian aspects.

    • karl garcia says:

      On your PS…….you broke your new year’s resolution.

    • josephivo says:

      For me the Leitkultur element by exelence is Sinulog. The coming together, the exuberance, the sweet marriage of fiesta, religion, commerce…

      Also something around beauty contests, karaoke, letchon all lifted to a next level. Something around boats and traveling, adapting, caring…

      Forget the narrative as long as you have a large mural in the Santo Nino church in Cebu telling that the Spanish brought CIVILIZATION.

  2. karl garcia says:

    The consumpton driven growth should be government spending, and not remitance based malling, which helps too,but at the end of the day the consumer sleep with an empty wallet. Broken record time, the budget is spending mostly for debt services and personel services about 60 % of gaa. We are left with 40% for the rest. Good news external debt to gdp ratio is improving debt may be less or not but gdp grew. ….

    • karl garcia says:

      On education spending latest data on wiki is we spend 2.8% of our gdp(2008) miilitary spending is 1.2 %(2010) and government spending is 10.53 % of our gdp (2012).
      Our debt to gdp is 45.4% of gdp as of 2015 lowest so far.
      When we reduce our debts more room for government spending like,education,military,infrasructure,strengthening of institutions…….

    • josephivo says:

      Where are the citizens owning the country? If debt payment is their decision, so be it. If not, why not? Who is representing them??? Who dares to tell them Mikey Arroyo is not representing them?

      • karl garcia says:

        A Hybrid of the three options, not a single one is perfect even ideal. Balance,synergy,fusion….

        Asian Authoritarian Rule
        American Neo Liberalism
        European Social Democracy

        AAR: Chinese system working for them, North korean is not Working.Marcos system,forget it.
        ANL: Globalization,trade lib has many pitfalls as well.
        ESD: Norbert Gonzales claims he is a social democrat, if based from his actions, then never mind.

        • karl garcia says:

          stop and enjoy the sunset, usually that is rush hour and it is traffic, so many can do that,especially on roxas boulevard back when reclamation was not yet a thing.
          On expensive cell phones… i know of former millionaires who sell their mansions and retire in smaller homes..enjoy things while they last,no regrets. If you can’t afford,remember that the best things in life are free.

  3. edgar lores says:

    1. Absolutely mind-blowing. So rich in ideas and vision that it boggles the mind. Joseph, you have outdone yourself.

    2. The ideas flow from the past to the possible future(s). The vision(s) present alternative scenarios of paradise.

    3. Quo vadis?

    3.1. The zero option is a dystopian scenario from science fiction.

    3.2. NO to Asian capitalism with limited individual freedom. The persecution of Anwar Ibrahim is too high a price to pay for economic gains. The rheostat is set too high towards the collective.

    3.3. NO to American neoliberalism with unlimited individual freedom. Social security benefits, while they exist, are seen as an inroad towards socialism. The rheostat is set too high towards the individual.

    3.4. YES to European social democracy. I have no real experience of this, but Australia (and Canada?) seems to fit the label. The rheostat is balanced between individual freedom and the commonweal.

    4. As an individualist I look askance at this idea: “We are what we believe others think we are. As a consequence, we can improve if either we change ourselves or if something changes in the way others perceive us.”

    4.1. I guess many people perceive this to be true, that they are as what is reflected in the eyes of others. We should evolve beyond being the image – or fitting the image — of what people see or want to see.

    4.2. As adults, we should be as we think we are… or should be. We are all unique in our own way. We should improve ourselves regardless of how others perceive us. The motivation for individual change should come from within, although inspiration can come from without.

    5. I like the emphasis on stopping to smell the roses and sitting to watch the sun set, and a vision of a gentle and kind world. This is important. We create the world that we would like to see.

    6. All of the suggestions require collective effort. It would take visionary leaders to initiate these. May these leaders be here… or, if still not here, be born soon.

    6.1. As individuals, we can do our part on items 6.1, 6.3, 6.7 and 6.9.

    6.2. The idea in 6.6 of “leitkultur” reminds me of something we mentioned in the past, the construction of a national narrative and the definition of the Filipino dream.

    6.3. This post stands out as a lucid precursor of that dream.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      6.2. My father wrote his first work title “Pantayong Pananaw” in the early 90s. Some precursors of it were to be found in Marcos’s book “Tadhana, History of the Filipino people” which my father HAD to write and made the most of. Under pressure after being put in jail and with a “alien” wife who could be deported any time and two young boys, my brother and me. My father had Sunday coffee with Ninoy Aquino, among others before Martial Law.

      My father heavily advised in the making of the teleserye “Amaya” starring Marian Rivera. The two first Tadhana books were his and dealt with the beginning of Spanish colonialism.

      First quote was similar to “they were divided, and thus fell under our rule” by a Spaniard…

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      3.4. Australia and Canada are somewhere between European social democracy and American neoliberalism. Germany as a whole is European social democratic, Bavaria has its own police and justice system and is de facto authoritarian social democratic.

      Bavaria is the most successful German state, strong state intervention in industrial development and rigorous police and courts take care of order. I encourage googling.

    • josephivo says:

      1. 🙂 tnx

      4.1 In a hunting/raiding society you would define yourself differently. Filipinos abroad see themselves differently, more empowered, more or differently disciplined and they act accordingly, see PiE stories.

      6.2 A “Leitkultur” is more than a narrative as culture is more than heroes and heroic events. Architecture, or Bach and Beethoven not to forget Wagner, The hut of uncle Tom… For the Filipinos top Fiestas and top floats certainly should be an important part.

  4. jameboy says:

    What or where exactly are the “three options” available for the citizens of the Philippines?

    I take the article as an amalgamation of various ideas narrated in a documentary fashion with no clear direction to point to the readers why is it so. What specifically is the problem that we need to address? Everything? That is possible but clarity remains elusive. Is it really about options or about answering ‘two primordial questions’?

    Don’t get me wrong, the blog has a lot of details that came with a lot of support to explain the whats and the whys. The thing was, the too-much-information mode has pulled me in a lot of directions the main point of which got lost in the process.

    I hope this critique is taken in a positive light. 👀

    • jameboy,
      Asian Authoritarian Rule
      American Neo Liberalism
      European Social Democracy

      • jameboy says:

        Okay, thanks. 😎

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Fourth option: Authoritarian social democratic, as proposed by me.

          Turkish and Bavarian model. Detractors might call it democratic Nazism… 🙂

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            big post below says more on the different variations. There are diverse possibilities…

          • jameboy says:

            I don’t think there’s a need for 3 or 4 options. Never even heard the President or anybody in gov’t. implying on it. Just like any country we have problems and we struggle to address it. The system we have is not perfect and we get by and fix what’s broken and move on. 🚸

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Puro remedyo lang. Even if you make remedyo, you should have an idea of where you want to go so that you do not end up with a totally mixed-up system like in the Philippines.

              • jameboy says:

                I still prefer the status quo than those ‘options’ that lack concreteness. I mean, where is the proposal as to what option is best for us? Why is it best for us? What’s the basis? Nothing has been clearly advanced nor proposed, so far. And I suspect the reason was the options are not realistic and does not fit to us in terms of culture and/or geography. ✈

              • Joe America says:

                Love the little airplane. How do you do that? Don’t let Kuya Eddie know though, he is stuck on asterisks right now, and 12 airplanes would be a little much . . .

                If we were to vote for different options, I would vote for the one you have just presented. And, indeed, I suspect President Aquino is doing so with his current positioning. ✈

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                I have made a proposal for the Philippines below that I think fits in terms of culture and geography, Read it if you want and then comment if any. Salamat po. 🙂

              • jameboy says:

                PinoyIE, you have a lot of posts I’ll have a hard time distinguishing the proposal you made. Just make one intended just for it. Thanks. ⚓

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Thank you for giving me impulses. I still have to learn to write shorter and summarize yet more. Sometimes I just get lost in the flow of ideas and ramble.

                But then again, these posting are not short by German standards. They have not only long sentences, but long articles and big books.

                Psychological researchers have found out that the average German attention span is WAY longer than that of average Americans… 🙂

              • Joe America says:

                And the attention span of the average Filipino goes to headlines but not articles . . .

                But I joke . . . mostly . . .

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                I used to have a typical Pinoy attention span when I arrived in Germany.

                If intellect is like mental muscle, attention span is like physical endurance.

                Both can be trained and both degenerate if not trained regularly…

            • josephivo says:

              See comment at the end of this tread.

              Move on to more sugar hidden in our food and more refined rice resulting in more diabetes, or in larger inequality, in more people feeing the country…

              • karl garcia says:

                Brown rice,red or purple rice easier to process, cheaper too. Demand wil lower the price, so they better promote and supply.

    • josephivo says:

      Correct. The article is quite fuzzy as often my mind is quite fuzzy. I was thinking at the “mental model” level that dictates how processes, also political processes are build, improved. Political processes are key in producing the things we as citizens need/like/value.

      Catholic thinking leads to other processes than Calvinists thinking or Confucian thinking. Without any basic idea of what is important and what secondary, things tend to develop along the easiest way, hyper capitalism with hedonistic mass consumption on easy things, sugar, fast beats, sex, faster, more powerful…. Is this the answer to Lenin’s question “To do what”? If not what does the Philippines with its crazy roots in Asia, Europe and the US wants? From there we can discuss the best ways/political processes/ actions to get there. This was intended just as a step back to reflect.

    • josephivo says:

      Doing more of the same results in more of the same. Revolutions often changes the course of history, regretfully in bloody ways. Visionaries with different ideas changed the course of history, so did catastrophes like the plague, hunger winters…

      The natural state of events is that water runs towards the sea, wealth towards the wealthy. If you accept the survival of the fittest and bad luck for the less gifted, then absolute freedom is the solution. If not men has to interfere somewhere, create irrigation and rice terraces or redistribution systems and safety nets.

    • i7sharp says:

      The “three options” are found closer to the end of the blog article than to its introduction.

      Ir would have helped, IMHO, if they were numbered, viz.:
      Option 1 – Asian Authoritarian Rule
      Option 2 – American Neo Liberalism
      Option 3 – European Social Democracy

      Simplify, simplify, simplify.


      The supposedly (have not found it yet) 8,000-page CRRP
      can be greatly simplified, IMHO, if we can
      baranganize, baranganize, baranganize it
      – i.e., provide detail in each barangay’s site the planned or finished rehabilitation.
      (A barangay site for this purpose can be set up in minutes.)

      • i7sharp says:

        @Joe America

        Can you please comment on my posting (above, re CRRP, barangays)?


        • Joe America says:

          Barangays are too often an element of authoritarian control and continued victimhood (as evidenced by Binay popularity generated at the barangay level), or incompetence when leadership lacks civic skill, but they also represent a tremendous opportunity for good if deployed for early dispute resolution or as first line of preparation to disasters and response following them. I’d say they function at about a 35% level of full potential.

  5. i7sharp says:

    “communicate, communicate, communicate”

    “summarize, summarize, summarize”

    simplify, simplify, simplify
    baranganize, baranganize, baranganize
    – through barangays

    • Vicara says:

      One would add: let’s not digress. Also, without having to dumb down, let’s put a limit on historical and political references and just state straight out what we’re proposing. One assumes we’d like readers to keep visiting JoeAm’s salon.

      • Joe America says:

        I feel your pain, Vicara, but have learned that the process is like mining for gold the way they do it in the remote reaches of the Arctic. They scoop up huge mounds of dirt and run them through cleansing baths to find the bits of gold that end up being worth a lot. Sometimes they find a huge nugget or big stream of gold. My advice is to keep reading, but use the scroll bar as a filter to skip quickly past what you consider dirt because here, gold comes in different colors for different people. Never has the discussion thread had so much dirt or so much gold. 🙂 I imagine your message is mainly for PiE, who has a Swiss keyboard that is well oiled.

        • Vicara says:

          It’s your intellectual salon, Joe; thank you for the hospitality. Actually, my message is to myself as well the others; when an intellectual canvass as wide as this blog becomes available, it’s easy to get carried away.

        • You are making me miss Mariano, Joe.

          PIE are you Mariano?

          Planting time at the farm so excuse me for not visiting here often.

          • Joe America says:

            PiE as a stealth Mariano. Now that is possible considering Mariano’s vast sense of humor. He might be able to pull it off. But PiE’s Englixches give him away. He is genuine, also one of a kind though.

            • Joe America says:

              ps, What are you planting?

              • I designed and implemented a permaculture food forest. It is touted as a farming principle that is sustainable and only labor intensive in the first two to three years. It involves planting perennials: fruit, nut and kindling trees, perennial vegetables and herbs and raising foraging livestock. It mimics how plants grow in a forest so after it is established, all you do is harvest and maintain. We’re getting up there in years and if we can get the hard labor done now, we’re hoping that we can count on it for subsistence plus we can still travel and pursue other endeavors.

              • edgar lores says:

                Oh, if only the Filipinos in the country had your industry and foresight! Self-sustaining farms, self-sustaining fisheries, self-sustaining LRTs/MRTs, self-sustaining poor-to-become-no-more-poor!

              • Joe America says:

                I hope when you are past the labor intensive part, you will do a blog on this concept. Maybe I’ll try doing a food forest here. I’d also like to see photos to understand specifically how you keep the cows from eating the tomatoes. 🙂

              • Juana Pilipinas : Would love to read a blog post on your endeavor

    • josephivo says:

      When there should be more than consumption, I follow you. Solidarity = Barangay. Lead Culture = Fiestas = Barangay. “It takes a village to educate” = Barangay…

  6. Thank you for this post.
    Excellent read.

  7. PinoyInEurope says:

    @Edgar re your post item 3. You have three parameters you can adjust for:

    A. how much individual freedom vs. state you have. Extremes: anarchy and totalitarianism. All kinds of shadings in between.

    B. how much economic freedom vs. state control you have. Extremes: neoliberalism and communism. All kinds of shadings in between.

    C. how much social services vs. you’re on your own you have. Extremes: nanny states and postcommunist Eastern Europe were there are even less social services than in US.

    Let us look at our models based on these parameters.


    1. josephivos Philippine dystopia:
    A. total freedom but only for the elite, probably little freedom for the masses
    B. total economic freedom for all
    C. no social services – even worse than postcommunist Eastern Europe

    2. Asian capitalism
    A. little personal freedom
    B. total economic freedom
    C. some social services but not much

    c. American neoliberalism
    A. much personal freedom
    B. much economic freedom
    C. some social services, more than b.

    d. European social democracy
    A. medium personal freedom
    B. medium economic freedom (Germany high medium, France low medium)
    C. medium to many social services (Denmark more, Germany low medium)

    e. Authoritarian social democracy
    A. medium (Bavaria) to low (Turkey) personal freedom
    B. low medium economic freedom (similar to France)
    C. high medium social services (especially meritocratic education)


    Present Philippine system:
    A. too much freedom for both elite and at bit less for the masses
    B. high economic freedom for the elite, de facto not much for the masses
    C. increasing social services including meritocratic education like CCT

    Present Romanian system:
    A. nearly total freedom but only for the elite, little freedom for the masses
    B. nearly total economic freedom for all including all kinds of Mafiosi
    C. nearly no social services, as they were dismantled after communism

    Josephs dystopia is not unlikely. I have SEEN something similar in today’s Bucharest. American businessmen like to call it the Havanna of the East, similar to Batista’s old Havana, with mobsters and pretty dark-haired Latin girls sitting in cafes. But: with horribly poor masses and streetkids.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Many Romanian women prostitute themselves in Western Europe because their parents get sick and there is hardly any state-subsidized medical care. Poor who get sick die there.

      Poor people regularly sell their kidneys – well only once per person – to the organ Mafia. Rich Western Europeans get their donor organs. Gypsy clans – whose heads are rich, have huge mansions and drive Mercs – cripple poor children to beg in Western Europe.

      Romanian thieves regularly rob the mansions of rich Western Europeans, Romanian hacker gangs recruit fresh university graduates from top universities like Cluj, well now SAP has its own BPO center there and the sensible grads go to them and not to the Mafia.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Cluj BTW is a holdover from the old socialist technical education system which was excellent. The communists wanted technical leadership and produced top engineers and scientists, they were only not able to convert it into economic leadership.

        Due to the formerly large ethnic German minority in Transylvania where Cluj is located, there are also a lot of German language schools founded by Ceaucescu – he got German government money in return. Good families send there kids there because they teach well.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Loved going to a Romanian restaurant in Munich, managed by a Cluj woman who looks like Marian Rivera, how could I resist going there as a Pinoy. Friendly but now is back home taking care of her teenage son, after divorcing her Turkish ex-boss and ex-hubby.

        • josephivo says:

          🙂 German ex-colleague is teaching there.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Anyway, to summarize: one must see how to adjust the three parameters:

      A. individual freedom vs. state control

      B. economic freedom vs. state control

      C. social services vs. you’re on your own

      Seeing what is best for the Philippines.

      Possibly with different adjustments at

      1. national level

      2. regional level

      3. local level

      This is something for all of use to think about. Karl Garcia mentioned stronger state spending similar to Keynesianism which is higher on state control on parameter B. As for the Philippines, my suggestion is:

      1. national level: A low, B low medium, C low medium

      2. regional level: A low medium, B medium, C medium

      3. local level: A medium, B high medium, C high medium

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      @Edgar: re 6.2 Filipino national narrative – here is a list of books by the Bahay Saliksikan ng Kasaysan (BAKAS) which IS the pantayong pananaw intellectual movement:

      1) Ocampo, Nilo. Katutubo, Muslim, Kristyano: Palawan, 1621-1901. Kolonya, Alemanya: BAKAS, 1985.

      2) Veneracion, Jaime. Kasaysayan ng Bulakan. Kolonya, Alemanya: BAKAS, 1986.

      3) Alaras, Consolacion. Pamathalaan: Ang Pagbubukas sa Tipan ng Mahal na Ina. Kolonya, Alemanya: BAKAS, 1988.

      4) Salazar, Zeus (patnugot). Ang P/Filipino sa Agham Panlipunan at Pilosopiya. Manila: Kalikasan Press, 1991.

      5) Lorenzo-Abrera, Ma. Bernadette. Ang Numismatika ng Anting-Anting. Quezon City: UP Bahay Saliksikan ng Pilipinolohiyang Simulain (BSPS), Bahay Saliksikan sa Kasaysayan (BAKAS), Programang Kaalamang Bayan at Tanggapan ng Dekano, UP Dalubhasaan ng Agham Panlipunan at Pilosopiya, 1992.

      6) Abrera, Ma. Bernadette at Dedina Lapar (mga patnugot). Paksa, Paraan at Pananaw sa Kasaysayan. Quezon City: UP Departamento ng Kasaysayan, UP Lipunang Pangkasaysayan (U.P. LIKAS) at Bahay Saliksikan sa Kasaysayan (BAKAS), 1992.

      7) Salazar, Zeus. Kasaysayan ng Pilipinas: Isang Balangkas. Quezon City: U.P. Departamento ng Kasaysayan, 1993.

      8) Salazar, Zeus, Dante Ambrosio, Enrico Azicate, at Monico Atienza. Agosto 29-30, 1896: Ang Pagsalakay ni Bonifacio sa Maynila. Quezon City: Miranda Bookstore, 1994. Binagong edisyon, 1995.

      9) Salazar, Zeus, Edward Yulo, at Atoy Navarro. Talaarawan 1996; Handog sa Sentenaryo; Himagsikang 1896. Quezon City: Miranda Bookstore, 1995.

      10) Yulo, Edward, Salome Quijano, at Tonney Calimag (mga patnugot). Pagsasanay sa Historiograpiya 1994-1995. Mandaluyong: Palimbagang Kalawakan, 1995.

      11) Salazar, Zeus, Edward Yulo, at Atoy Navarro. Talaarawan 1997; Digma ng mga Anak ng Bayan; Himagsikang 1897. Mandaluyong City: Palimbagang Kalawakan, 1996.

      12) Navarro, Atoy, Mary Jane Rodriguez, at Vicente Villan (mga patnugot). Pantayong Pananaw: Ugat at Kabuluhan; Pambungad sa Pag-aaral ng Bagong Kasaysayan. Mandaluyong City: Palimbagang Kalawakan, 1997. Binagong edisyon, Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2000.

      13) Salazar, Zeus. Ang ‘Real’ ni Bonifacio Bilang Teknikang Militar sa Kasaysayan ng Pilipinas. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 1. Mandaluyong City: Palimbagang Kalawakan, 1997.

      14) Salazar, Zeus. Si Andres Bonifacio at ang Kabayanihang Pilipino. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 2. Mandaluyong City: Palimbagang Kalawakan, 1997.

      15) Salazar, Zeus. The Malayan Connection: Ang Pilipinas sa Dunia Melayu. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 1998.

      16) Kimuell-Gabriel, Nancy. Ang Timawa sa Kasaysayang Pilipino. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 3. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 1999.

      17) Reyes, Portia. Ang Himagsikang Pilipino sa mga Pahayagang Aleman. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 5. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 1999.

      18) Rodriguez, Mary Jane. Ang Kababaihan sa Himagsikang Pilipino. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 7. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 1999.

      19) Salazar, Zeus. Ang Babaylan sa Kasaysayan ng Pilipinas. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 4. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 1999.

      20) Salazar, Zeus. Ang Kartilya ni Emilio Jacinto at ang Diwang Pilipino sa Agos ng Kasaysayan. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 6. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 1999.

      21) Salazar, Zeus. Wika ng Himagsikan, Lengguwahe ng Rebolusyon: Mga Suliranin ng Pagpapakahulugan sa Pagbubuo ng Bansa. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 8. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 1999.

      22) Paluga, Myfel Joseph. ‘Araw’ at ‘Gahum’ ng New Israel sa Mindanao; Isang Pag-aaral sa Sekta ng Moncado Alpha and Omega sa Perspektibang Historiko-Kultural. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 9. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2000.

      23) Salazar, Zeus (patnugot at tagasalin). Karl Marx at Friedrich Engels; Manifesto ng Partido Komunista. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 10. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2000.

      24) Navarro, Atoy. Ang Bagong Kasaysayan sa Wikang Filipino: Kalikasan, Kaparaanan, Pagsasakasaysayan. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 11. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2000.

      25) Salazar, Zeus. Mga Tula ng Pag-iral at Pakikibaka: Salin at Akda. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2001.

      26) Salazar, Zeus (patnugot). Sikolohiyang Panlipunan-at-Kalinangan: Panimulang Pagbabalangkas ng Isang Larangan. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2004.

      27) Salazar, Zeus. Liktao at Epiko: Ang Takip ng Tapayang Libingan ng Libmanan, Camarines Sur. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2004.

      28) Salazar, Zeus. Kasaysayan ng Kapilipunuhan: Bagong Balangkas. Quezon City: Bagong Kasaysayan, 2004.

      29) Flores, Ma. Crisanta. Ideolohiyang Anacbanua: Pagtatakda ng Baley/Sentro ng Doxa at Kamalayang Makabansa sa Kasaysayan at Panitikan ng Pangasinan. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 13. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2006.

      30) Isorena, Efren. Ang Sakayan sa Pagbubuo ng Banua: Pandan, 1174-1948. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 14. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2006.

      31) Rodriguez, Mary Jane. Ang Dalumat ng Bayan sa Kamalayan at Kasaysayang Pilipino. Inilathala bilang Bagong Kasaysayan, Lathalain Bilang 15. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2006.

      32) Salazar, Zeus. Ang Pilipinong “Banua”/“Banwa” sa Mundong Melano-Polynesiano. Quezon City: Palimbagan ng Lahi, 2006.

      33) Salazar, Zeus, Sharon Maminta, Atoy Navarro, at Lars Raymund Ubaldo. ASYA: Kasaysayan at Kabihasnan. Quezon City: Abiva Publishing House, Inc., 2010.

      34) Ocampo, Nilo. Kristong Pilipino: Pananampalataya kay Jose Rizal. Quezon City: Bagong Kasaysayan, 2011.

      35) Reyes, Portia. Panahon at Pagsasalaysay ni Pedro Paterno, 1858-1911: Isang Pag-aaral sa Intelektuwalismo. Quezon City: BAKAS, Inc. and VIBAL Publications, Inc., 2012.

      36) Lasco, Lorenz at Jaime Tiongson (mga patnugot). Saliksik: Saysay ng Salaysay E-Journal. Tomo 1, Bilang 1, Setyembre 2012.

      37) Navarro, Atoy at Adonis Elumbre (mga patnugot). Saliksik: Saysay ng Salaysay E-Journal. Natatanging Isyu ukol sa Araling Kabanwahan, Kasaysayang Kabanwahan, at Araling Timog Silangang Asya. Tomo 1, Bilang 2, Setyembre 2012.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        27) is about the purported burial jar of the ancient Bikolano founding king Handiong which is now in a museum.

        There IS a national narrative that is growing, only the intellectual Filipino language used by the group is not easily accessible to many Filipinos who only speak a stunted form of their own language, which has fallen prey to disuse and has been kept from growing, the intellectual discussions that take place only in English do not let the Filipino language grow into a more powerful tool for discourse. This is why they publish ONLY in Filipino.

        Joe, for them you are a loyal migrant. To be truly Filipino, learn the language please. 🙂 And it does incorporate some Bisaya terms, like banwa for bayan, balay for bahay…

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Their definition of history: KASAYSAYAN: Salaysay hinggil sa nakaraan na may saysay para sa sariling lipunan o grupo. – a story that has meaning for ones own society or group.

          Their view on Filipino language: Hindi simpleng tagapagpahiwatig, tagapagpahayag at tagapag-ugnay ng kasaysayan ang wikang Filipino. Sapagkat daluyan ng kalinangan at karanasan, mabisa rin itong imbakan/impukan-kuhanan ng kasaysayan. Kasangkapan din ang wikang Filipino sa pagsusuri at pag-unawa ng mga pagpapakahulugan sa kasaysayan na nakaugat sa sariling kabihasnan….” – not just a simple means of communication, information or getting together in order to discuss history. Because it carries our culture and experiences, it is a powerful tool to discuss history. It is also a tool to research and understand our giving meaning to history in a way rooted in our culture.

          • edgar lores says:

            Thanks for the list. Much appreciated.

            You anticipated my failing: I am poor in Tagalog, and would not be able to swim these waters.

            I do understand where the authors are coming from, but if one of the axles of the wheel of progress is to communicate, communicate, communicate, then I fear they might be mistaken in their parochialism.

            It is like attempting to proselytize and expecting every convert to read the Bible in the original Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek.

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Which is why at heart I am more for the rival group I mentioned below, that of Prof. Jaime Veneracion. Mang Jimmy used to be a family friend, now not anymore. Typically Filipino quarrel, very personal and hardheaded, even among the best of minds – pity.

              Unlike my father, he is not purely an intellectual, he is also an owner of an SME that gives jobs to the masa – a car repair shop somewhere around Novaliches.

              My ex-yayas husband Manong Eddie regularly stops by Mang Jimmy when he visits home. They moved to Germany shortly after us, since they are part of the extended family.

              Hey my Tagalog is quite good, but I sometimes fail to understand the writings of the BAKAS group – think my worst very long postings as books in Tagalog and you get it.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Late 90s, my father even refused to start a website, saying that he did not want to use that “internationalist” stuff. He liked Binay and wrote a biography of Erap after his ouster. Recently he was still for Grace Poe.

                Now he is totally against Binay, bitterly opposing him where he can, about Erap he is silent, he wrote an open letter to the daughter of his friend Fernando Poe but has disowned her now as a traitor to the country.

                So even if he is hardheaded, he does change his mind when enlightened by new facts – well I am much like him only a bit more modern and flexible. He reads Joe America and posts him regularly in Facebook for all his language dogmatism. 🙂

              • Joe America says:

                Please extend my thanks, for the honor, the reads and the repostings . .

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Definitely will. 🙂

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Regarding Hebrew: one my father’s arguments is: well the Israelis managed to revive their language, even if many migrants to the Holy Land spoke it with a German accent?

              Why can’t we, we still have a living language, theirs was practically dead already!

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Maybe some of the historians reading here, for example Manong sonny, can pick up the call and read some of those books – average 200 pages. Summarize them into English for those who – in my father’s thinking – are not truly part of the national community.

              No publications in any other local languages either, which lead to an enormous altercation with some notable Visayan historians. Too much concentration on the Manila and Tagalog aspect of the national revolution back in 1896-1898. French-style exclusivism/centralism.

        • Steve says:

          It is difficult to learn formal Pilipino as an outsider, because nobody anywhere actually speaks it. It’s an academic construct of a language with no real populace. The true “national language” is street Tagalog, the language of media and movies: people learn and speak it because they hear it daily. It’s a language I speak well, though I read and write it poorly… learned it in Cubao in the 80s, about as “street” as you can get. I learned Cebuano first, and early in my Manila years was known as “Steve Bisaya”, but if you live a while on 20th Ave the Tagalog does seep in. Now I’m trying to learn Kankanaey, but it’s slower… I’m older, and I end up learning mostly from kids, who stay way ahead. Tagalog is seen here as something slightly disreputable, the language of the would-be conquerors from Imperial Manila, but it is still widely understood. That is the power of media.

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Formal Filipino is based on the Bulacan dialect of Tagalog the way it was spoken during the times it was first defined in the 1930s/1940s. Even if some more modern writers make concessions to the Metro Manila Tagalog of the media.

            The difficulties in communication that the Philippines has come not only from the different languages and ethnic groups but from the in-groups: political, business, academe that cannot or will not communicate properly with one another, much less cooperate.

        • Joe America says:

          Tell it to my brain which seems brittle and rigid in certain sections. It’s like I can play the harmonica but not the guitar.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        There is another group formed by Prof. Jaime Veneracion who used to be with BAKAS:

        Books and pamphlets

        Baler Heroes’ Trek Guidebook. SAMPAKA (Samahang Pangkasaysayan ng Bulakan) Inc., 2005. He edited the book and authored two articles.

        Agos ng Dugong Kayumanggi: Isang Kasaysayan ng Sambayanang Pilipino (interactive CD-Rom). Quezon City: 2004.

        Espanya: Kasaysayan, Kalinangan at mga Gunita ng Paglalakbay: Malolos. Center for Bulakan Studies, BSU, 2003.

        Rizal’s Madrid: Guidebook for Filipinos to the places associated with Rizal, 2001. Published by the Embassy of the Philippines in Madrid. An abbreviated article on the same subject, “Rizal’s Madrid and the Filipino llustrado Concept of Anatomy,” was published by the Dyaryo Bulakenya, Center for Bulacan Studies, BSU, 2003.

        “Baseline Study of Bulacan Province” (manuscript). Quezon City: PCPS, 2001.

        Kasaysayang Bayan sa Pintig ng mga Kasaysayang Pampook. NHI and ADHIKA ng Pilipinas, Inc., 2001.

        Philippine Agriculture During the Spanish Regime. Quezon City: College of Social Sciences and Philosophy, 2000.

        “The Spain of Sancho Panza and the Don Quixote” (manuscript). 2005


        Review: Nicanor Tiongson’s The Women of Malolos, read at the book launching. Faculty Center Conference Hall, June 2005.

        Review: “Glenn May’s “The Making of a Myth…” Philippine Studies Journal, Ateneo de Manila University, 2005.

        Review: Lino L. Dizon’s Epistle of a Friar-Captive During the Philippine Revolution, 1898-1899. Kapampangan Studies Center, Holy Angel University, Angeles City, 21 January 2002.

        Review: Vicente L. Rafael’s White Love and Other Events in Filipino History. Philippine Political Science Journal 22, no. 45, 2001, p. 160-163.

        Being Filipinos, the two groups prefer to quarrel instead of joining inspite of differences. The main difference is that BAKAS exclusively uses Filipino and writes only about Filipinos while the other group is more open to using English and discusses foreign influences.

        • edgar lores says:

          Thank you again. This is more like it.

          These are very detailed — limited to a locality, a gender, an event or a personality. What I had in mind was an overarching narrative of the Philippines and Filipinos, of where we came from and what we are… partly to enable us to chart where we are going but more importantly to establish what we hold dear. As I said the definition of the Filipino Dream.

          The “Agos ng Dugong Kayumanggi…” seems to fit the bill but, alas…

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Tadhana, the history of the Filipino people by Marcos was written by my father – the first two volumes, then the dictator lost patience with him because he spent too much time in the National Archives. My father had to do it for reasons I mentioned – jailed (also because he regularly had Sunday coffee with Ninoy) and an “alien” wife who could be subject to chicanery anytime plus two small kids. But third/last volume was done almost without him.

            • edgar lores says:

              Ah, your father was the ghost writer for the SOB — pardon my French — who continues to haunt our country. Your father must have many tales out of school to tell. Perhaps he should record them for posterity?

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Yeah, one of many ghost writers. But he used the forced “opportunity” to research very deeply on the initial period of Spanish colonization. My mother still has a personally signed copy of the book at home in Berlin. Close to the facsimile copies of the original manuscripts of Rizals Noli me Tangere and El Filibusterismo. My fathers donated his ten thousand book on Philippine history and other topics to De La Salle along Taft.

                We lived well during his time as a ghost writer – he hardly had to lecture at U.P. and still got his salary plus the salary from Makoy. He does NOT talk about that time anymore not even to his family. A former colleague at the Philippine Embassy in Bonn where I once worked as a student accidentally asked me why my father and Marcos once quarreled. Somehow Marcos must have respected him, because he did not get into trouble for that, in fact he was sent abroad to continue researching on a government passport.

                Even before I got into jail for activism, he used that opportunity to prepare our move out of the Philippines. He had to stay home though, it must have been a kind of hostage deal.

                Wonder if he will ever tell the whole story, I doubt it. You know how older Filipinos are.

                Not very open. Even now. But who knows, he may have some stuff hidden – he is 81…

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                One comment of my father regarding Marcos and Arroyo, when I called him up during the big Manila floods in 2009 because he lives near Katipunan:

                Marcos was bad, but he did not deserve to be executed – Arroyo DOES!

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                He is also an avid supporter of Noynoy, even for constitutional change to allow him a second term. But also very much against BBL in ANY form. And happy about every form of US military aid to the Philippines – he prefers the US to China as the lesser evil.

            • i7sharp says:

              “Tadhana, the history of the Filipino people by Marcos was written by my father – the first two volumes, then the dictator lost patience with him …”

              Your postings about your dad and “Tadhana” are … precious.
              And timely. 🙂

              Because of your postings I got prompted and was able to post – after a long interim – something very useful to a site I had set up in 2007 (over 7 years ago) on Philippine “History.”
              The site had been scheduled by YahooGroups (YG) for deletion (due to inactivity).
              I am still hoping someone will want to take over the site.

              Googling with
              I got this as the very first of thousands of results:
              07-07-07 with the Marcoses –

              I have not yet read the article but the “07-07-07” makes me think it is a serendipitous find. 🙂

              Oh, btw, I mentioned of “goldmine” recently.
              I had this mine in mind:

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            As for an overarching national narrative, understandable to all, it might be that people like Manong Sonny are the right persons to put this together. Come to think of it, no single historian except Agoncillo wrote a complete history of the Philippines.

            Agoncillos history, a standard textbook, is dated and very flawed in many of its views, something fresh and useful should be done but they are all so overspecialized.

    • josephivo says:

      In deciding what the Philippine “house” should look like it is important to align it with cultural traits.

      Catholic belief in caring, the poor…
      Asian respect for authority…
      Addiction to American malls…

      What is more predominant?

      • karl garcia says:

        Malls good for escaping the heat, so prevalent.
        Respect for authority is shown by tax compliance, traffic rules compliance, so answer is not prevalent.
        Caring for poor as shown by Yolanda, and many unpublicized philantropy and social responsibility which is good. Impunity bad. Victimhood self rating is bad.

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Caring is definitely part of the culture, that is why a social component must be strong.

        Filipinos can deal best with very definite, clear authority – so authoritarian democracy.

        Not too neoliberal because the playing field is not level in culture that is semi-feudal.

        Authoritarian social democracy similar to (also semi-feudal) Turkey was my proposal.

        More freedom, economic and political, at the local levels, less at the national level.

  8. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    In beauty contests, brown-skin Filipinos are natural victims. Thank goodness to Donald Trump, he disqualified Miss Philippines for not looking like a real traditional Filipino.

  9. karl garcia says:

    josephivo says:
    April 10, 2015 at 9:41 pm
    Looking around, I see: Few have parents high in the pecking order of the purok, barangay… the top is small and many settle for acolyte positions. Confidence comes from position in the group. Many look down on dark skin and Malay features. (Where is Mariano when you need him ?) Many work in call-centers and are shouted at the whole day. Many OFW’s are in servant positions. Many have so little that they are powerless, having to beg, a mendicant society. Tricycle drivers, jeepney drivers, helpers… feel as (and are treated as) underdogs. Utang creates helplessness. People accept their fate by blaming others. Ambition is a bad word.

    70 years of independence, but something seems still missing.

    Not digressing I think, blog and comment has same author….

    On debt traps.
    Many are really trapped fom utang from 5-6, Credit card debt trap, debt from relatives, debts from friends.
    You can’t escape loan sharks and collectors, so escape from family and friends is what’s happening, which is not good.
    economic sovereignty,food sovereignty,economic security,food security
    Is there any difference?
    Oligarchs,landed elite….no problem, the problem is elitism…….

    • josephivo says:

      Do you compare my pidgin English with Joeam’s professional and spirited prose?
      (Luckily for me there is a spelling check., although not working all the time and there is a synonyms tab on the right mouse click.

      Debt and numerical illiteracy.

      Elitism and respect for authority.

      • karl garcia says:

        I Don’t compare … spelling,grammar error king,not good enough english.
        If I will compare, mine is like Mariano Englitzches Only he has good command of it.

  10. i7sharp says:

    “180 million Filipinos in 2046. Poverty everywhere. The last fish in Filipino waters was caught 5 years ago, the last tree cut some years earlier.”

    Can you please share with us the URL of your source?


  11. NHerrera says:

    A remarkable piece, ending with the 6.x series of what can be done. I particularly like

    6.7- Dare to formulate the ideal but also indicate the first (baby-?) steps to get there. Translate all in an understandable language and communicate, communicate, communicate while improving (or creating) all communication channels: via school education, traditional media, social media, one on one conversations . . .

    That way the piece is not an academic exercise but pragmatic enough to state the importance of crafting and implementing the “baby steps” that are needed to get there — no matter the national choice of the desired end.

    Like, too, 6.9, being a man of science (I am biased in this aspect, of course.)

    And for a man past his mid-70s, 6.8 is music to the ears.

    Thanks Josephivo.

  12. PinoyInEurope says:

    I am aware that have unloaded a lot of ideas in this blog. Ideas, observations, stories from years of being abroad. Because I often asked myself, seeing how people get things done in other countries – how did they get to where they are, how was their development, why are they ahead?

    What I am very happy about is that many here are picking up some observations, some ideas, some stories and trying to find the bridge between them and helping the country move forward. It is not an easy thing to do. And it needs a lot of thinking, then planning, then implementation.

    This implementation will have to be on several fronts and is already happening now, but what josephivo is mentioning is very right: there is no clearly defined leading culture yet, no Leitkultur.

    Edgar Lores pointed out that the national narrative is still lacking – yes there are some of them, but they are not yet communicated and spread out at all levels. From a Leitkultur and a national narrative, a “Leitbild” can finally be formed – a vision of where to go to guide all initiatives.

    Without a guiding vision, all initiatives are like people rowing a boat without a common direction.


    So what can be done? Let me propose some next steps:

    1) Define the national narrative. Not just what happened in history but a real story of how the Philippines got to be where it is NOW. The goal should be that if you ask a typical Filipino what his history is, he can give you the short form in 5-10 minutes. A short attempt to do this:
    a) Hindu culture in the entire Malay world came first. The Laguna copperplate inscription dating to 900 AD and traced to the Manila Bay Area is the first evidence of a flourishing culture. Muslims came starting 13th century. Manila was ruled by the Muslim Rajah Suleiman, a relative of the Sultan of Brunei, already then a Bolkiah, when Legazpi came in 1571. Many ruling families, especially at the local level, cooperated with the Spaniards who were never that many. These ruling families were called the principalia.

    b) The Philippines was important for the Spanish galleon trade. Silver from Potosi in Bolivia, loaded in Acapulco, was traded for Chinese goods in Manila that went back to Acapulco. For over two centuries, the Philippines was ruled as a part of Mexico until Mexican indepence from Spain. The 19th century brought rising wealth for many Filipinos, the Suez canal increased trade. Finally this lead to revolution because the Spanish were weak and the Filipinos – especially the now much richer principalia – wanted their own state, cut short by the deal where the Spanish sold the Philippines to the United States.

    c) It was logical for the United States to seek the Philippines as a beachhead for its power and business interests in the Far East, after winning the Wild West and reaching out over the Pacific via Hawaii and Samoa. The Japanese challenged the United States on that and lost. Independence in 1946, but with US bases and full access to natural resources and business. Bell Trade Act and Laurel-Langley agreements made sure of the latter until 1974. Bases had to leave in 1991. Left to itself since then, the Philippines has been struggling for self-definition.

    2) Define what the Philippines is NOW. My attempt at a definition:

    a) The people living on the territory defined as the Philippines by the United States, governed from Manila. The Spanish East Indies, governed from Manila by the Captaincy General of the Philippines under the Viceroyalty of New Spain residing in Mexico City, were the Philippine Islands, the Marianas, Guam and the Mariana Islands, the Caroline Islands (Palau and the Federated States of Micronesia), parts of Formosa (Taiwan) and the Moluccas.

    b) The people who share the common destiny of being governed by Spain and then by the United States to then be under the flag of the Republic of the Philippines starting 1946. The Moros were officially governed by Spain but only partly controlled by the late 19th century.

    c) The people who are shaped by the media, especially television and radio, within the modern Philippine state and therefore all speak some form of modern Tagalog language as common lingua franca over the islands, with some English being used as well by a few.

    3) Define what the Philippines should BECOME. Now that is the hard part…

    – that should be defined by those mentioned in 2) since they live in the country.

    What I see at this point is that the Philippines has so far never truly shaped its own destiny. But the future cannot be defined without clearly defining past and present first.


    National narrative first, then Leitkultur, then the vision of where to go next. Choosing the best political system depends on the vision, the Leitbild that is developed.

    Now that is an important question for those who comprise the Philippines, who live there:

    In what kind of country do you want to live in 20 years from now? Think of how old you will be, how old your children will be. How do you want to live, how do you want them to live? Picture your ideal – not perfect – life situation in 2035. How does it look like?

    Remember that the well-being of others also affects yours. Think of what balance of social services, government authority and economic opportunity is best to realize your dream.

    Then you have the answer to josephivos question for which there are more than 3 choices.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist Viktor E. Frankl said,

      It isn’t the past which holds us back, it’s the future and how we undermine it, today.

      He survived concentration camps and found out that inmates who did not lose their dreams of a brighter future were more likely to survive. In “Shawsank Redemption”, a wrongfully convicted banker hangs on to his dream of escape and a hotel in Mexico. And makes it.

      • josephivo says:

        Plan the future based on a vision is one way. There is also the conservative way: recognize what is valuable today, plan to keep it, adjust where needed because of changing circumstances or grow/improve it where possible. (Build on strengths, not weaknesses)

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          In any case you need some sort of plan, even when adjusting and improving. Because if you just improve as needed with no structure, you get stuff that is haphazard and inconsistent like houses in the slums or like many parts of Metro Manila for that matter.

          Still it is important to ask the question how people want their life to be in 20 years, because this is the key to the direction everything else will then have to take:

          do they want to have polluted air outside and always be in malls shopping? or

          do they want to be able to bike beside Roxas boulevard and enjoy the sunset?

          do they want to commute three hours every day to get to work in a cubicle? or

          do they want to be able to live in a provincial capital and still have a top-level job?

          do they want to eat junk food all the time and listen to the muzak in the malls? or

          do they want to eat fresh native food and enjoy the colorful barrio fiesta?

          are just a few possible questions, the rest is what people have to think about.

          • josephivo says:

            Or the conservative way without a vision, e.g.:

            Taking your time and enjoying a sunset is out strength. What is changed that could endanger that enjoyment? And/or how can we improve this enjoyment?

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Enhance the good stuff and minimize the bad. No experiments. Don’t try to fix stuff that isn’t broken… don’t try to make things too perfect… That is an excellent approach.

            • Juana Pilipinas says:

              Isn’t taking time and being so laid back a problem in the Philippines already?

              Stories about Juan Tamad:

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Juan Tamad was a folk hero because he avoided the forced labor (polo) that the Spaniard subjected our ancestors to, even though the local elites (prinicipalia) were exempted because they helped the Spaniards rule and supervise these people. Nothing wrong with being tamad kung nasa lugar. What people have to lose is the attitude coming from colonial times that government is the enemy you cheat and steal from, which was justified during foreign rule and is the wrong moral compass that makes people vote for Binay.

              • Joe America says:

                Now Juan seems to be a lot like Mariano to me, ahahahaha.

                That link goes into the “must read” box for a few days. Classic. I like the flea killer one. I shall imagine applying the method on Binay in my more vindictive moments.

                Juan for National Hero #2.

              • josephivo says:

                I use e.g. to indicate the example was just to explain the reasoning.

                Step one should have been “identify the strengths”. Reasoning could be: Lay back attitude comes to mind, than try to define it as a positive. “take time to enjoy the good things in live whenever their is an opportunity”… changing environment of working in BPO’s, threat reduced opportunities … action: look for opportunities, or safeguard the few opportunities left.

                The future can grow from planning, starting with a vision with maybe the need for a revolution (France) or the conservative way from “organic” growth, identifying and caring for the current good, identifying and pruning the current bad with a guarantee of no revolution (UK)

              • karl garcia says:

                There is a segment in society who are workhorses,all stressed out and what not, the one who wants to give up and say mag OFW na lang kaya ako, and some whi opt to stay. There is still a segment of indolent Filipinos relying on remmitances,or the bread winner..

              • Joe America says:

                I’m an indolent apologist, and proud of it.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                In “The Indolence of the Filipino”, Rizal wrote that the Filipinos are not truly indolent.

                Filipino peasants go into the fields at around 4 a.m. and stop working at midday because it is too hot to work by then.

                The Spaniards who woke up at 10 a.m. thought that the Indios were working only two hours, this is what Rizal told them!

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                “identifying and pruning the current bad with a guarantee of no revolution (UK)” For that, we need a constitutional monarch. Eddie Ramos would be a good idea, he looks like King Bhumibol after all.

      • i7sharp says:


        I got somehow reminded of Dr. Virchow and his friendship with our Dr. Rizal:

        About concentration camps, …
        I get the New Yorker in my mail every week. For a buck a copy.

        btw, have thought of retracing Dr Rizal’s steps in, say, Heidelberg?

    • jameboy says:

      I am aware that have unloaded a lot of ideas in this blog. Ideas, observations, stories from years of being abroad. Because I often asked myself, seeing how people get things done in other countries – how did they get to where they are, how was their development, why are they ahead?
      That’s very noticeable PinoyIE in the way you hug the blog board with those information or ideas. Most often you tend to veer from the topic itself just to unload something that would have been relevant had it been posted in the proper article. I say, control your self and convert your habit of overproduction of ideas and information on a single blog by using them as subject of your own blog. In short, cease making your own blog within someone else’s blog. Just a friendly reminder. 😎

      Looking on other countries and finding out how they do things is fine but you have to be aware that not all countries are the same. When you look for countries to compare the Philippines with, in terms of issues you are interested in, you have to factor in a lot of things to get the proper perspective. It is not easy to look for a model since each country have their distinct character in terms of culture, history, geography, political system and economic well-being, etc.

      Lastly, to be frank, I have yet to see a comparison or analogy on the Philippines that I will agree on. 😴

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Nothing at all that is useful for the Philippines in what I have seen abroad? Really nothing?

        Because all these years abroad I have been wondering – what is the secret of others, why are they so successful? What is being done wrong, that others are doing the right way?

        Could it be that “not applicable” is just an excuse? Why is slavishly following American recipes applicable to the Philippines while adapting recipes from elsewhere not useful? That is what I ask myself. Because America is not the gold standard. That is what I mean.

        Look around people, the world is much bigger. Think broader. Use whatever you want, discard what you do not want. I am done with unloading. The rest is up to you guys.

        Because in the end it is your place back home – your responsibility. I am elsewhere.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          And better not attack me now guys. I have admitted that I unloaded a lot of stuff, not to show off but to share whatever can be used, and that was my way of saying that it is over.

          I may have overdone some things, BUT I am not Gloria Arroyo, I am NOT SORRY for it.

          First of all, saying sorry for some people is an excuse for them to attack you more. Second those who are telling me to stop now could have done so much earlier and might think my admitting the truth is a weakness. Well, wrong thinking. I regret nothing. See ya.

        • jameboy says:

          It not really about nothing is useful in other countries that we can emulate but it’s about the essence of who we really are, our capability, the political and economic system we have, etc., in comparison with others. We can copy things, why not, for that’s the norm in social, business and even politics but we cannot copy exactly what other countries have. It will always have the Filipino touch, so to speak, for we adapt things our own way.

          It would be best if you can give tangible examples of what you want done in the country that you witnessed abroad. And preferably do it in your blog so that we can have a thorough discussion of it. 🌐

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            “t will always have the Filipino touch, so to speak, for we adapt things our own way. ”

            Please define “Filipino touch”! Is reme-remedyo, tagpi-tagpi the Filipino Leitkultur that josephivo is looking for? No continuity, every President makes a new tourism slogan?


            “tangible examples of what you want done in the country that you witnessed abroad”

            Tangible o tan-G-A? Hehe I appreciate your challenges, I was starting to get bored!

            they are scattered across numerous postings, but let me attempt to make a short list:

            1) federalization/regionalization/decentralization – worth one entire blog article. Manila is both stifling regional development and making its own life too hard with centralism. Have to study the current Philippine system a little better though – and look up Federalism Forum.

            2) Something like Baywa AG to help small farmers and cut out middlemen by providing logistics (grain storage and selling, machines, seeds, technical advice) – in fact President Quezon already had something similar called National Rice and Corn Company (NARIC)! This topic was shortly discussed with Karl Garcia and Joe, so it was already tackled.

            3) ministerial form of government where seats are given not personally but by party – to force formation of real political parties, to force people to vote on issues/parties and not for individuals. Filipinos think too personalistic when it is actually about their life/future. BBL is in fact a good example. There, your seat is party-based and not person-based, and you can even lose it if charged with corruption, and someone else takes your seat.

            4) something like the 5% rule in Germany, it can also be a 3% rule. Parties that get less than X% of votes don’t get any seat to prevent too many small mini-parties from making lawmaking nearly impossible. I have looked at Philippine congress party distribution.

            5) State newspaper/broadcasting supervisory boards composed of multisectoral representatives – I gave Joe some examples in the state newspaper blog.

            6) Right to reply similar to that in Germany – I also gave Joe some examples and a clear argument for it. The weakness in the Philippines being the somewhat strange courts.

            7) One-stop shops for citizen services – in the age of IT, you can have local service centers where you apply for nearly everything instead of running all over town. Already exists for businesses, I do not know if it already exists for the normal Filipino citizen.

            8) Something like the German which CANNOT easily be stopped in its investigations. NO TROs possible against them. the maxim for the prosecution is in dubio pro duriore, that is presumption of guilt.. No evidence can be considered “immaterial” or “irrelevant”, everything can be looked at by them. As soon as the Prosecutors Office presses charges, the court THEN decides based on presumption of innocence. The Augsburg Prosecutors Office was feared by politicians in Bavaria after big boss Franz-Josef Strauss died.


            “preferably do it in your blog”. Two blogs possible out of the above shortlist:

            a) one on topics 1, 3 and 4 together including Federalism Forum / Duterte ideas. Topic 7) would also have to do with possible decentralization or a kind of client-server architecture for government. A lot of my ideas were simply brainstorming in that direction.

            b) one on topic 8 and more, but I have to piece together some stuff, research on the Philippine judicial and police system. BTW Japan and Korea have German justice system.

            Iyong Philippine school system naman, bukas ko babanatan sa blog ni Joe, I think I know what is coming it is about how DepEd does not work. I will take time to summarize my answers though so that it is consolidated and understable even for short attention spans.

            Ngayon alam mo kung bakit naasar sa akin ang Kabataang Makabayan. Ang kulit ko talaga, nakakaasar talaga ako. Ang hirap sa sistema ng Pilipinas, hindi ipinopromote ang sariling pagsusuri at sariling paghatol, panay tanggap na paghatol lang ang ginugusto.

            Gawa ito sa pagiging alila ng Pilipino sa halos apat na dantaon, isip-alila pa rin ngayon. Hindi sanay sa sariling pag-iisip, sariling pagsusuri at sariling paghatol gawa ng ayaw ito ng mga matataas at malalakas sa Pilipinas hanggang ngayon. Ngunit tama ka, minsan wala sa lugar ang aking mga banat. Mamayang gabi ako mangaasar diyan ngunit salamat sa iyong magandang mga mungkahi, gagawin ko ito sa paraan na mas maikli upang ito ay makarating at maaring suriin ng mga kasama natin sa malaya at makabagong pag-iisip.

            Pilosopo at nagmamarunong tayong lahat dito, walang masama sa ganoon, mabuti pa ito dahil isinanay tayo sa pagiging ignorante at mangmang sa pagiisip ng mga mang-aapi. Kaya lang tama ka rin, dapat itong ilagay sa lugar para maintindihan ng mga kausap.

            Kritika sa sarili ang itinuro sa aming dapat mauna bago kritika sa iba, ayon kay Lenin. Nagpapasalamat at bumabati (hindi nagbabati, sa itlog iyon!), Kasamang Ryan na itiniwalag pero makatao pa rin ang pag-iisip at may pagmamalasakit para sa bayan.

            • jameboy says:

              Is reme-remedyo, tagpi-tagpi the Filipino Leitkultur that josephivo is looking for? No continuity, every President makes a new tourism slogan?
              Well, since you love abroad I’m not surprise you are on “tourism” issue. I don’t know what is ‘tagpi-tagpi’ in the tourism industry. All I know is that the promotion and advertisement about the country is constantly being updated and improved to attract visitors. Nothing’s wrong with that.

              Anyway, that’s a non-issue for there are more important matters that requires serious attention. 🇺🇸🇯🇵🇬🇧

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Yep, for example the Philippine justice system. I will either write a blog as soon as I have more information and can make truly relevant criticisms and comparisons, or I will comment if there is a blog written by anyone. I sense something coming from Joe…

                If the Ombudsman had similar powers like a German Public Prosecutor who cannot be stopped by TRO, there would be no Junjun Binay issue in the Philippines. My examples of how mainly the Augsburg public prosecutor and others cleaned up in Bavaria after highly efficient and progressive (but also very corrupt) Franz-Josef Strauss – from the Amigo scandal in 1993 to going after his son and daughter to the 2013 relative’s affair, the Gustl Gustl Mollath affair were they put a whistleblower in a mental asylum for 7 years and made him build model cars for a company owned by the State Chancery head and her husband – show how one can effectively clean up in a Catholic, clannish and corrupt state.

                But I like this place you know – once you know people well and speak some dialect, you are in, just don’t piss off the wrong people, especially the powerful. Like Philippines. Like the laid-back and flexible mentality here compared to overly serious Northern Germany. And it is NOT abroad for me, it IS my second home, my mother IS German after all and therefore my mother tongue is literally German. Like Joe’s second home is Philippines.

              • Joe America says:

                Tourism is becoming one of the anchor industries to Philippine prosperity. The “It’s more fun in the Philippines” is more than a slogan, although a very effective one, it is an attitude, and the Philippines delivers, more and better every year. Internationally recognized publications are waking up to the Philippines. It is natural in the advertising business to change slogans now and then when the old one gets stale. But the current one has been there for five years and still has legs.

      • Joe America says:

        The last line is very important. I think we use comparisons to try to figure the Philippines out, but there is no comparison, really. I mean, “Spanish Asia” makes that clear. Then put in a tribal platform, 114 languages, a feudal social platform, the quirks of American occupation and English and the love/hate tug there, infuse Japanese violence, authoritarian education, mafia bosses and a free, emotional press. Gadzooks.

        I think that it why it is important to like what is here, because it is who “we” are, and move on to deal with poverty and storms. Everything else will find its own place because the democracy does kinda work.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Yes, you have defined what the Philippines IS in a nutshell, excellent. Still does not exclude seeing what recipes could fit in that setting based on those basic parameters.

          For example, an Ombudsman with powers similar to the German Prosecutors Office which practically no court can stopped with a TRO = “einstweilige Verfügung”.

          The Augsburg prosecutors office was feared by Bavarian “Amigos” in the time after the death of bossman Franz Josef-Strauss. Not even the Ministry of Justice could stop them.

          • PinoyInEurope says:

   – the Amigo affair, you need Google translate for this, but I will translate a part:

            In February 1993 during the traditional political Ash Wednesday of the CSU in Passau, Prime Minister Max Streibl greeted his auditorium with the the words „Saludos Amigos!“. He asked the rhetorical question “is having friends something shameful in the CSU?” as a reaction to investigations about him having helped a company get defense contracts against personal benefits and helping a school friend get subsidies.

   – the relatives affair, also here I will translate/paraphrase a part as a summary:

            In April 2013, several cases of nepotism among Bavarian MPs were revealed who had given jobs to spouses and first and second-degree relatives using public funds.. on the 25th of July 2014, the Augsburg public prosecutors office pressed charges against MP Schmid for evading 340.000 Euro in social security contributions by hiring is wife and another woman as fake freelancers.. minister of culture Ludwig Spaenle payed back 34.000 Euro… minister of justice Beate Merk paid back all money her sister got… deputy interior minister Gerhard Eck wants to pay back his wife’s salary to the state treasury

            Bavaria is an analogy in some ways because it has a clannish Catholic culture and is agricultural in tradition – and that invites much village-style corruption but also can be nice for a Pinoy because it is not as anonymous and machine-like as Northern Germany. Recently a mayoral election was invalidated because the CSU candidate had falsely registered transient Romanian harvest workers working on HER land as permanent residents and voters. In Germany EU citizens who are permanent residents are allowed to vote in local elections. The Augsburg public prosecutors office also went after the children of Franz-Josef Strauss and effectively prevented a political dynasty from taking root.

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              If you are here longer and especially if you know some of the right people and speak the local dialect even just a little, you are in and people find pragmatic ways to get things done. Not wrong at all if it is not illegal, I like it being a Pinoy at heart with a German head.

              If they don’t like you or you piss of the wrong people, especially those who are too powerful, you can get into real trouble over here, ask

              Gustl Ferdinand Mollath (born 7 November 1956 in Nuremberg) is a German man who was acquitted during a criminal trial in 2006 on the basis of diminished criminal responsibility; he was committed to a high-security psychiatric hospital, as the court deemed him a danger to the public and declared him insane based on expert diagnoses of paranoid personality disorder.[1] Mollath’s forensic incarceration for seven years and the surrounding legal judgments became the basis of a public controversy in Bavaria and the whole of Germany.

              In 2006, after being accused of fabricating a story of money-laundering activities at a major bank and assaulting his former wife Petra Mollath,[1] Gustl Mollath was tried at the District Court Nuernberg-Fuerth for aggravated assault and wrongful deprivation of personal liberty of his ex-wife as well as damage to property. The court justified its decision to declare Mollath criminally insane amongst other things, by citing a paranoid belief system Mollath had developed, which shows up partly in the belief that his former wife is involved in a complex system of tax evasion.

              In 2012, the case was widely publicized when evidence brought to the attention of state prosecutors showed that money-laundering activities were indeed carried out over several years by members of staff at the Munich-based HypoVereinsbank, as detailed in an internal audit report carried out by the bank in 2003.[1][2][3][4][5] On August 6, 2013, the Higher Regional Court of Nuremberg ordered a retrial and Mollath’s immediate release, overturning a verdict of the Regional Court of Regensburg that had blocked a retrial.[6][7]

              In June 2013 his former wife spoke for the first time to the press. According to her, Gustl Mollath was continually violent towards her, prior and during marriage. The alleged money laundering activities became an issue only after their divorce, which directly contradicts Gustl Mollath’s version that he had suffered from the illegal activities of his former wife.[8] Gustl Mollath has denied the allegations levied against him and has said that he was being persecuted for blowing the whistle on tax evasion at HypoVereinsbank.[7]

              The Bavarian State Parliament elections were overshadowed by this case, forcing Prime Minister Seehofer to make Justice Minister Beate Merk, who had publicly called Mollath crazy in a parliamentary hearing, shut her mouth. She is no longer Minister of Justice. Thanks also to the investigative Süddeutsche Zeitung and my favorite investigative online blog telepolis (coming from the IT and former hacker community, close to Wikileaks) for doggedly pursuing the Mollath case, and the new incorruptible generation of Bavarians.

              Telepolis pointed out that Mollath’s wife knew the judge who placed Mollath in jail, however that man is now retired and will probably never face responsibility, so be it. Blog commenters pointed out that some of the money launderers may have been members of a local Rotary club in the area, industrialists and politicians, the statute of limitations for that has passed and that investigation was never resumed. I will not press either, Mollaths slot in the mental asylum now being open… He also made expensive model cars for the company of former State Chancery head Christine Haderthauer and her husband – who had them made in psychiatric asylums as “therapy” and sold them expensively. Because of that, Haderthauer resigned in Sept. 2014 and is facing charges with her husband.

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Now imagine these scandals if it had been possible to put TROs on investigations done by German Public Prosecutors like what happened to the Ombudsman re Junjun Binay.

            German Public Prosecutors have felled State Prime Ministers, Ministers and lesser beings.

            A German CANNOT easily be stopped in investigating. NO TROs possible against them. The maxim for the prosecution is in dubio pro duriore, that is presumption of guilt.. No evidence can be considered “immaterial” or “irrelevant”, everything can be looked at by them. If they decided to go against me based on “initial suspicion” = Anfangsverdacht, they could even keep my notebook and keyboard indefinitely for perusal. As soon as the Prosecutors Office presses charges, the court THEN decides based on presumption of innocence.

            I remember a critique by my math teacher – do not assume that everybody knows how you make your conclusions. Therefore I am making my line of argument regarding the relevance of some of my arguments more clear now, in that vein.

            And also bearing in mind that some read posts per mail and not directly on the canvas of this blog, sometimes I comment wildly between arguments and jump around, leading to my stuff becoming incomprehensible. Anyway I hope that what I mean is clear now.

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          “Spanish Asia” Every country is unique but you can find parallels, but of course you have to be aware of their limits. Well Turkey is a Eurasian country, clannish, religious and feudal, which is why I put up their system as a possible model. In fact I am not the first to do this, some Philippine military people are fans of the Atatürk model from what I know. Maybe Karl Garcia can enlighten us on this – I hope I am not talking about RAM here…

          Take parallels in order to LEARN from them, just like we used religion as a parable to understanding others things in previous blogs. But don’t think the parallels are all-encompassing or mistake the message conveyed by religion with real religion.

          “Everything else will find its own place because the democracy does kinda work.” Yes!

          In fact there is an enormous awareness about cleaning up – my German examples show that the Philippines may even have MORE morality in its people than the Germans.

          But if you do make a blog on the Philippine justice system and how it could be improved, I shall repeat my present comments in a more condensed way. It is just to show that some of the stuff I am posting is NOT totally immaterial and irrelevant as many people maintain. Since I do know more about the present Philippine system now thanks to this blog and Raissa’s, I will take pains to a) summarize and b) point out the exact relevance by argument, just like I did regarding right of reply, German style in the state newspaper blog.

          • Joe America says:

            I think your comments are generally relevant, and certainly rich with insight, although my attention span, endurance and typing speed often lead me to skim without digesting, just to keep up. Volume has its pluses and its minuses. I don’t mind digressions that are relevant and lead to a positive way forward for the Philippines. One is always on thin ice when using comparisons with others to show that the Philippines is not up to speed. It is a better overall approach to praise and teach rather than criticize. I think you are heading that direction. Carry on! 🙂

            • NHerrera says:

              jameboy, Joe America, PinoyIE: I just want to express my enjoyment of the the exchange of comments starting from jameboy says: (April 13, 2015 at 10:08 pm) to Joe America says: (April 14, 2015 at 8:50 am) — the subject of concepts and experiences from abroad as against possible use or adapting such in the country.

              • Joe America says:

                Thank you Kuya NHerrera . . . 🙂 The intellectual firepower here is downright inspiring.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Thanks – the nice thing about this blog is that it is self-correcting and self-enhancing. Everybody gives impulses to others in a nice way, due to the basic civility that rules here.

                I have now come up with a methodology for useful comparisons and analogies:

                1) find out what two places have in common, examples:

                a) Philippines and Bavaria: Catholic, clannish, argumentative, lazy by nature (Bavarians admit that!), family-oriented and personal on the good side but often corrupt as a result, Franz-Josef Strauss and Marcos were friends, hunted together, Marcos gave FJS a pistol.

                b) Philippines and Turkey: religious, clannish, feudal, very hierarchic (the Sultan culture), authoritarian (father has all the power, Atatürk means father of all Turks that means much), proud and sensitive, macho and mayabang on the downside – ask Ruffa Gutierrez.

                2) find out what differs between two places:

                a) Philippines and Bavaria: Bavarians are very direct, Filipinos not. Bavarians are proud and arrogant – being German and similar to Americans. Bavarians are unruly but submit to authority much more easily than Filipinos.

                b) Philippines and Turkey: Turks are Muslim Orientals and as such have less respect for women than Filipinos both Christian and Muslim. Malay cultures are not fully patriarchal, the Muslim Menangkabau of Indonesia where inheritance is matrilineal for houses and patrilineal for weapons are a prime example, the strong role of women in Philippine and Indonesian politics show the difference. Turks are very serious, not a fun-loving people.

                3) find out what they are doing better than Philippines to check adaptability

                a) Because Filipinos do not submit to state authority as easily as Bavarians but are less patriarchal than Turks, an authoritarian social democratic model somewhere between the Bavarian and Turkish system is a possibility. Stricter than Bavaria, less strict than Turkey. But with more social components than Bavaria, maybe even more than Turkey because Turkey is now much richer than the Philippines. Interventionist industrial policy like both.

                b) The typical German state prosecutors functions that no court may interfere in, not even the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe, may be useful for the Philippine context. The experience with Junjun Binay would not be possible with such a setup. BUT because the Philippine system is often very corrupt, such powers should only be given to the Ombudsman and subject to later review but NO TROs to prevent tampering with evidence.

                Any suggestions on how to improve this methodology are welcomed. This blog is in many ways a form of crowdsourcing, of jamming to get better ideas. The goal being to find helpful suggestions to improve things, not to criticize, but to find good things to adapt.

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                “The intellectual firepower here is downright inspiring.” Yeah, it is a good form of pintakasi. With Artillery Joe making sure there is no friendly fire amongst comrades.

              • NHerrera says:

                JoeAm makes sure there is “no friendly fire.” But I take another precaution just in case, like a guerrilla — strike with short sniper shot; and out I go; for another shot later. Hahaha.

    • sonny says:

      PiE, care to co-author a primer PH history (monograph-size)? 🙂

      • karl garcia says:

        Hey PiE,
        Sonny wants you to co author with him.

        • sonny says:

          Karl, you’re included, too!! 🙂

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Joe may also give Karl my mail addy. Maybe we can have some komiks with jokes in the sidebars. Karl can deliver the jokes, my brother is talented in creating komiks, with some really kenkoy characters but if Karl also does komiks even better!

            Serious illustrations and historical pictures of course, but some komiks insets as teasers to deliver the message more effectively. Former KM agitprop expert speaking here!

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Karl, we also need you as a reviewer, seriously. You are the local person. We need someone to check how digestible our stuff is. How appropriate. How understandable.

            • karl garcia says:

              Your product will be better without a third wheel in me.Your of luck to that project .

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Well then we will look for local reviewers via our networks. Sonny and me are both overseas Filipino intellectuals. So we will also look for OFW masa reviewers.

                But that is stuff sonny and me will discuss offline. And announce the product here…

              • PinoyInEurope says:

                Tama ka, walang third wheel. Bisikleta ang kailangan, hindi tricycle, todas tayo diyan…

                Si Manong Eddie na asawa ng dati kong yaya, may tricycle noon – pagkatapos ng maging PNP siya – kaya lang na-aksidente, walang pambayad sa may-ari kaya nag-OFW siya…

        • PinoyInEurope says:

          Yep, I already have said yes. It will be in English, and we should see to it that it is translated into the major Philippine languages: Tagalog, Ilokano, Bikol, Kapampangan, Cebuano, Samar-Leyte, Ilonggo, Maranao, Tausug, Maguindanao – I am sure I forgot some now, but all major languages, Igorot and Lumad languages and smaller languages like Pangalatok (Pangasinan) are too much, besides these groups all speak at least one of the major languages, Igorots speak Ilokano, Lumads speak Ilonggo, Moro and similar.

          It is not a big deal to crowdsource the translation, Sonny and me can do Tagalog and Ilokano, for the rest find volunteers among Facebook friends or here. The primer should IMHO be a PDF, max five pages with graphics. But those are details we will discuss more.

          • PinoyInEurope says:

            If it is a PDF, I will host it on my webspace and reserve an internet address filipinohistory dot something myself. Around 15 PDFs is not much to host. I already know who I will ask about the Bikol and Maguindanao translations – Facebook friends.

            Having printouts distributed nationwide can be done via political contacts in Facebook and elsewhere, I know one who knows Governor Joey Salceda for example.

            Five pages is easy to digest, especially with pictorials, some messages must be disseminated quickly and effectively to have impact. My goal would be to have it out before summer vacation ends, so the back-to-schools get it on their tables. Pam!

          • Joe America says:

            I suggest you do it off line, and if you give me permission, I’ll forward your e-mail address to sonny for direct contact.

            • PinoyInEurope says:

              Yes, that is exactly what I meant with discuss more, not here. I have already given you permission to forward my mail addy to sonny – and to Karl if he wants to participate. 🙂

      • PinoyInEurope says:

        Wen Manong sonny! That would be a great thing! Joe may give you my mail adress…

        • sonny says:


          • PinoyInEurope says:

            Hehe, finally I am doing what I always wanted to do, but was SCARED of before – competing with my father in his field, he is after all one of the three gods of Philippine history – ACS is what some say, Agoncillo, Constantino and Zeus Salazar…

            I being his son am only a demigod and know my place. My mother is European and my father is a Taurus, so my father did not even have to pretend to be a bull to court her. 🙂

        • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

          Recommended reading on the first globalization, my source for Potosi and also with many chapters on the Philippines, which is why I post it here:

          This is PinoyInEurope, now matured as a blogger, the “teenage” fights and skirmishes are over now, posting from now on under my real-life name to prevent falling back into trolling.

      • Waiting to read this! Cheers!

  13. karl garcia says:

    Fishing….. artificial corral reef, strong maritime police coast guard to stop dynamite fishing, stop what needs to be stopped even fishing for a while.
    Forestation- An honest to goodness land use policy – an inter stakeholder conference must happen. Replanting seeds are useless if after a few years, a resort,technopark,mixed use whatever rises……….

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      Many good ideas in your postings. Pragmatic suggestions based on local observations. That is the way to go. My main point was always about people elsewhere doing exactly WHAT IS NECESSARY first, then doing WHAT IS POSSIBLE. Based on their situation.

  14. ray james says:

    The over-riding issues are political immaturity, lack of social participation, corrupt/weak institutions, dynastic dominance, and the dire state of the legal profession/system, all compounded by poor educational standards, from elementary school through to university.

    Under such conditions, impunity destroys and divides, discrimination abounds, corruption becomes endemic, and all can only flourish at the behest of a broken political and judicial system.

    The key task is to build strong foundations based upon core values, where the culture is the driver, not the system, where the rule of law is the glue which binds society, not fractures it, where education is the investment for the future, and where empowerment is the primary catalyst for change.

    “The government, which was designed for
    the people, has got into the hands of the
    elite and their employers, the special
    interests. An invisible empire has been set
    up above the forms of democracy”
    Woodrow Wilson

    Politically, Maslow believed that few people achieved self-actualisation, and consequently promoted a form of benevolent dictatorship based upon skills, not based upon birth. Am sure Lee Kuan Yew was a fan, and certainly a practitioner.

    Elitism, however, is still at the root of Maslows belief in a natural political and social order.
    His political model of self-actualisation, as distinct from his individual model, recognises, and predicts, a two-tier society ( within a 2 tier world)
    And he is largely right.

    The continuum of political models often try to re-balance the natural order to a greater or lesser degree, usually by adjusting what signifies ‘elite’, be it birth, money, education, knowledge, or achievement, but in practice there is always a hierachy in any field of endeavour, and ideas must be tempered with reality, otherwise they simply remain unfulfilled ideals and theoretical constructs.

    The obvious flaw in the Philippines is that there is in reality only one small ‘closed shop’ of an incestuous elite which controls all aspects of society including opportunity and entry. In other societies multiple ‘mini – elites’ evolve and provide natural checks and balances enabling social mobility and greater dilution of raw power. The unsavoury relationship between politics and entertainment in the Philippines is a case in point, and which actually ensures that anyone who becomes popular is quickly reigned in, or adopted by a politician. Individuals can only grow under a watchful eye and popularity is too be harnessed and used fir personal/political gain, even if it is some-one elses achievements.
    Control of everything is everything to both the oligarchs and the dynasties – a mutual appreciation society. But change one and the other will naturally fall.

    ‘Elitism’ is also embodied in the principles of meritocracy and egalitarianism, equal opportunity via education, and reward for achievement, but in a more acceptable and constructive form.
    Meritocracy enables social mobility whereas elitism protects the status quo and over time creates insurmountable chasms between ‘top’, ‘middle’, and ‘bottom’
    Egalitarianism not only recognises differences, but actively seeks to embrace the potential, and include variety of opinion and experience. The doctrine has been finding more traction in recent years, not only in politics, but also in corporate boardrooms as a response to changes in social values and demographics. Time will tell how much is marketing and how much is genuine.
    And whilst many societies have components of egalitarianism – e.g 1 person, 1 vote – the principles and practices extend far beyond individual aspects but necessitate a cohesive approach and full application.

    In a true meritocracy there is no room for passengers, cronyism, and nepotism.
    Equality of opportunity, but no guarantee of equality of outcome. Free market principles apply in life as well as in economics.

    From ‘who you know’, to ‘what you know’, and especially ‘what you have achieved/contributed’

    God and Karl Marx are dead.
    The Philippines may wish for a benevolent dictator, bucketloads of foreign aid, and an easy care-free life, but that isn’t a real world solution.
    The ‘do nothing’ option can only result in stark outcomes, socially and economically, so the fundamental choices will be reduced from 3 to 2 – Shape up (politically), or ship out (economically).

    As many are seeing now the global reality is a divide between countries, and a further divide within countries. 2 tier countries and 2 tier societies. A ‘2×2 political and social matrix’

    The one over-riding principle is that education and training is both the route out of poverty, and also the means to achieve individual social mobility in an egalitarian system, as well as collective economic success.
    It has to be the number one focus, and priority. Currently the education system fails the people and the country.

    The present system does not work.
    The future will ultimately not be determined by those who cling to the past but by those who have the hunger for a just and decent society which is respected and a mind-set which is both open and broad.

    It is not about managing change but driving innovation
    Not about reform, but about transformation
    Not about building, but about creating
    Not about hope, but about achievement

    The solutions lie not in the quantity and complexity of systems, but in the simplicity and quality of the key values which are applied with conviction and consistency, and with draconian consequences for transgressors.

    No-one gives up power and privilege without a fight, particularly when they see it as their birthright, the route into easy money, and the entry ticket to the social calendar

    Comparative politics teaches many lessons.

    The article on meritocracy in Singapore (link below) outlines the benefits and dangers, and shows that even with a level playing field, over time, all roads can lead back to elitism, but always better to be in the race, than just the waterboy.

    • PinoyInEurope says:

      “From ‘who you know’, to ‘what you know’, and especially ‘what you have achieved/contributed’” Excellent. But I do like a little bit of “who you know” because the aspect of TRUST and personal chemistry is very important – even in business.

      Good that we are people and not industrial robots. I prefer to deal with people I have known for decades, ’cause as the Portuguese say, “old friends and old wine are the best”.

      “No-one gives up power and privilege without a fight” true – which is why systems that do not give competent and industrious people a chance to rise up to the elite – and those who are well-born but incompetent and lazy to float downward, eventually fails because there is then a critical mass of competent and ambitious people deprived of opportunities because of decadent and degenerate ruling classes. That has alway lead to revolutions in the past. French and Russian revolutions are a case in point, revolutionaries always want power…

      How fast people may rise and fall is another question. I think a humane system should not let people rise up to fast (upstarts are often brutal and lack culture which is also a value worth preserving) or sink too low (people can make mistakes). Neoliberalism is too harsh, destroying culture by making money the only value, Lee Kuan Yew style dictatorial neoliberalism has made Singapore progressive but sterile. More cigarette butts in front of Munich central station than in the whole if Singapore I am sure – and some call ME Hitler?

      “Comparative politics teaches many lessons.” Yes it does. I am sure there are methodologies for that, Herr Kollege – oh sorry I used German but don’t mention the war I do know you are English. My approach as always is eclectic, empirical, prototyping moving on to more and more methodical and accurate over time as I learn to use the proper tools. Even if all you need for carpentry is a hammer, a saw and a chisel, more tools are better.

    • josephivo says:

      Love the analysis but miss the answer to Lenin’s question: “to achieve what?” and “for whom?”

      Do we want people with more expensive cell phones or people with more time to enjoy a sunset?

      Some got a lot of talents and are born in well connected families, others have talents but are not connected, others have no talent at all but are well connected and some have no talents and are not connected. Do they have equal rights? Or good luck for some, bad luck for the others.

    • i7sharp says:

      @ray james
      From ‘who you know’, to ‘what you know’, and especially ‘what you have achieved/contributed’

      Dado Banatao would probably be amused or appreciative if he knew “a high school student” could have achieved/contributed this: – Iguig, Cagayan is Dado’s birthplace
      The site was created about six years ago.
      As far as I know, Iguig still does not have an official website.

      May the powers that be see this as “sharing” – not “promoting.”
      I hope some people (high school students, etc.) will want to take over it or put up a site for each of the 23 Iguig barangays.

    • i7sharp says:

      @ray james
      From ‘who you know’, to ‘what you know’, and especially ‘what you have achieved/contributed’

      1. baranganize

      Has someone coined “baranganize”?
      If not, may I claim it as a “contribution”?

      What is “baranganize,” anyway?

      “baranganize” is, in a way, the opposite of …

      “balkanize” divides, breaks up, … hostile places, states, …
      “baranganize” unites, fits together, … benevolent places (such as the 42,029 barangays).

      2. asaasap

      I threw this in – on a whim.


      “as short and as simple as possible”

      Repeat after me:
      a sa a sap
      a sa a sap

    • i7sharp says:

      Still on Ray James’ “achieved/contributed” – http://ja-rjac

      My small contribution (if I may call it that):
      Would it have helped if “priorities” were mentiond or clearly defined before we were presented the “Three Options”?

      In any case, …

      If only because they are both scheduled to end next year (2016), can we make it a priority to look at the CRRP vis-a-vis the PDP (Philippine Development Plan) 2011-2016 … and determine what options we still have to get the most of these two grand plans?

      By so doing, we will perhaps see the “Three Options” in a better light?

      But, first, we have to see the details in the CRRP.
      Has someone here actually found an online copy of the reportedly 8,000-page CRRP?
      The PDP has less than 300 pages.
      Do you have a feeling the CRRP was kept “asaasap” (as short and as simple as possible)?

      btw, here is Chapter 10 of the PDP:
      Conservation, Protection, and Rehabilitation …

      Click to access CHAPTER-10.pdf

    • i7sharp says:

      That should be …

  15. ray james says:

    The egalitarianism of luck sits outside my parameters and beliefs. People should aim to make their own luck.

    Work/life balance is a universal challenge, but determined by individual needs, drives, and choices.
    Ultimately everything is driven by self-interest to varying degrees, even altruism and philanthropy.

    The greatest contributors are those who create wealth and jobs. We see the world differently from the observers, and ‘victims’

    If someone chooses to watch the sunset on the beach as their raison d’etre, then so be it, as long as they do not expect to borrow my cellphone.

    Maybe the cult classic, The Dice Man – Luke Rhinehart, would appeal. Let the dice decide – if you are feeling lucky!

    People should never look for excuses – that is the hallmark of a loser, – and one who will never achieve elite status, even in an egalitarian society.

    Winners, not whingers – as i have said before. Professional sportsmen will understand. They do not need to read Lenin to have a philosophy of success, and if a team sport, so much the better – selfishness is tempered with contribution. The reason sport in english public schools is so important to personal development, and lifelong success.

    • josephivo says:

      Life/work balance. For the happy few there is no difference, if you are at Maslov’s 5e level you can live your talents, your “hobbies”, working and enjoying becomes the same. Effortless? No, ask musicians, sportsmen, entrepreneurs, scientists…, some craftsmen too.

      Looking for excuses is different from being born with an IQ below 90, or being born to a dead-poor family in the Sahel. Looking for excuses is different from questioning why the playing field is tilted to the 1%.

      Most winners in the Philippines are the children of corrupt officials, smugglers and illegal gamblers. Yes there are exceptions too.

      And whatever the system, I don’t care. I only care that people take an informed decision and that the majority is listened to.

      One doesn’t have to read Lenin to copy a quote 😉

    • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

      “People should aim to make their own luck.” And the state should intervene only where their luck is not their fault – socialized primary and secondary education for example, true to the Romanian saying that “it’s not your fault if you have a poor father, but if you have a poor father in-law it’s your fault”. Socialized medical basic services, and some help for the jobless but only for a given period of time – getting laid off or sick may not be your fault.

      “Ultimately everything is driven by self-interest to varying degrees” Yes. I don’t want a country with too many poor people, because I do not want to have a wall around my house because there are people who want to steal my stuff. Bismarck’s social reforms are in place in Germany until today and are a buffer against rebellious masses and commie agitators like I used to be myself – a rebel who wanted power, I admit to that 33 years later.

      “If someone chooses to watch the sunset on the beach as their raison d’etre, then so be it, as long as they do not expect to borrow my cellphone.” Correct. I am able to blog here, to bike along the Isar River when I want to, because my consciously frugal lifestyle and my hourly consulting rate allows me to – a rate I earned through years of study and hard work. I have experienced what too much charitability towards bums can mean – pure trouble.

      “People should never look for excuses” Correct. I know why I am in the middle – and that was a fight in itself avoiding the bottom – and not a political PR CEO like my kid brother. Because I had more of the victim mentality, something my little sister shook me out of. She is now the director of the Fashion Space Gallery at the London College of Fashion at 36. But still I do believe in making opportunities as equal as possible, society less feudal…

      “The reason sport in english public schools is so important to personal development, and lifelong success.” England is very much a meritocracy. My brother-in-law is from a North London cockney family, very working class. Membership in the British Cadet Corps as a youth disciplined him, the son of a builder who now has his own company. No whingers in that family! BTW I am PinoyInEurope, now matured as blogger, posting with his real name.

      • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

        And since my sister is a positive Filipino role model as well, I post her here ONCE.

        Since our father is Zeus, she has a lot of Athena in her – a war goddess:

  16. ray james says:

    You see. The Brits even give filipinos a chance, beyond cleaning toilets/bedpans. Pity you can’t do the same in your own country. The clues are there.
    Egalitarianism, as long as it is elsewhere!
    A cuckoo in the nest strategy.
    You can take someone out of the 3rd world, but you cannot always take away their 3rd world thinking.
    (Same applies to Essex girls)
    P.s. your posting of your sisters photo is a weird, and revealing, thing to do!
    But London is a good test of anyones abilities and attitude. My London property is not far from the gallery, in The Barbican, which has a great Arts Centre. A place for the elite to live!
    Only 8,000 (8 thousand) people live in the City of London, so nice to be one of them, especially at weekends when the commuters stay in suburbia.

    • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

      I know it is revealing. Well, it is the positive version of Filipino pride and clan pride. 🙂

      And the Brits do give everybody a chance, other than Americans who are friendly but often patronizing, the glass ceiling and true racism are stronger in the US than in UK.

      You even have Royal Immigration (or what to they call it) police in hijabs or Sikh turbans who check your passport coming in. In the US they make problems for women with hijabs.

    • Joe America says:

      Yeah, but good luck in finding anybody’s street address. Cab drivers are required to have a doctoral degree and memory certification that matches the power of Big Blue.

      • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

        Come on, my brother-in-law is cockney royalty, a true North Londoner from the part that was bombed to smithereens by the Germans – his grandpa who grew up in the slums told us that some Christmases ago – and has a hard time finding his way in South London.

        His father is a building contractor who renovates and restores a lot of the old buildings in the center, his uncle is boss at a bus contractor for London transport in the North London.

        • Joe America says:

          Well, it would help if the street names did not change at about every block.

          • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

            There is a very funny book called How to be an Alien by Hungarian-British George Mikes.

            Some quotes: The French have system – the English like to muddle through…

            The French think love is a game – the English think cricket is a game…

            My brother used to say the word that embodies Englishness the most is “makeshift”…

            Joe you could write a book with the same title about being an American in the Philippines..

    • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

      “Pity you can’t do the same in your own country.” We HAD to leave. Just like Carmen Pedrosa whose daughter Veronica was with BBC for a while. Funny, Filipinos criticized her for her British accent. Typical for Filipino pro-American parochialism.

      “You can take someone out of the 3rd world, but you cannot always take away their 3rd world thinking.” True for me, I left when I was 17, took me decades to shake that mentality even until now. My sister was 5 years old then, didn’t grow up that Third World anymore.

      Barbican – my sister used to be a curator at the V&A, she did several modern exhibitions to lure young people to the old lady. And created Friday night late, a mixture of vernissage and after-work party with her then boyfriend now husband as the DJ – he was MTV once.

  17. Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

    @josephivo: Philippine Leitkultur being the fiesta is not all that wrong. The street Leitkultur of Cuba for example is salsa, the song here “Yo Vengo de Cuba” – I am from Cuba – is the unofficial national anthem, salsa with a mixture of Latin hip-hop.

    Danced in the Munich Olympic mall by a group led by Baris (Turkish migrant) and Adriana (Italian migrant) in front of a Starbuck’s clone – illustrating your ideas of internationalization:

    • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

      The moment Tagalog rappers from Tondo say (they do really cool stuff):

      Pilipinas in da house!

      like these Cuban dudes, Filipino Leitkultur with modern nationalism will have arrived.

      Just had a flash from my freestyle rapper days, to the melody of the latter part of the song:

      pinaninindigan ko na ako’y taga Maynila, pinagmamalaki ko na ako ay Pilipino…

  18. ray james says:

    I am very pleased that London has taken your sister to heart, and vice versa.

    London remains the best city in the world – even with the influx of Russians etc.

    And the best taxi drivers – they have to pass The Knowledge which is unique, and takes on average 5 years studying to pass before you can drive a cab. No surprise that the winner of UK tv’s toughest quiz – Mastermind – was a cabbie.

    • Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

      Hey, she speaks with a modern British accent, as a university friend of my parents, son of a British admiral and retired EU official remarked to my mother in Queens English:

      she speaks like my nieces: posh with a little bit of cockney…

      We Filipinos adapt very well – I have become a bit Bavarian, my accent and slang sometimes annoy my Prussian mother who tells me: what did I teach you High German for all my life?. Berlin is to Munich as Manila is to Davao… 🙂

      And our Filipino nationalist clan is now proudly joined in an alliance with a cockney royal clan from the North of London, in important working-class London businesses from transport to construction. They are just as clannish as we are, these people. 🙂

      I held the father’s speech at my sister’s wedding at Land’s End, the cliffs and the sea reminded me of the landscape of my native Tiwi, Albay coast. My father could not come, he cannot fly in a plane anymore due to his medical condition. I will visit him come soon…

  19. Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

    To give y’all an impression of the tropical spirit of “Yo Vengo de Cuba”, here is the original video.

    Fun tropical spirit, but words that show love of country and pride in all that it is:

  20. Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

    Finally, a VERY positive example of Filipino Leitkultur:

  21. Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

    Or THIS: (the happy end of a story that has much drama and vindictivness in it)

  22. Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

    And FINALLY this teleserye which my father among others co-advised in the background:

  23. Irineo B. R. Salazar says:

    Popularized yet accurate ancient times:

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