The Philippines: New thinkers wanted


Old thinkers

by josephivo


Imagine the year 500,000 CE. What a nice world, plenty of natural wonders. But no more humans left to admire it. Am I too optimistic? Is 5,000 CE more realistic for this scenario?

Or after all, maybe we’ll find the number pi is no longer irrational? The speed of light no more the maximum speed? Will we learn to manipulate the other 6 dimensions of the Universe? Bend the current universe and jump over the curved time-space into something completely new?

Or is the apocalypse waiting around the corner . . .

The Need for Something New

It is clear to me that the current trend of population growth and the growth path based on extraction is not sustainable forever. Climate change, migration of millions over the US-Mexican border, migration of millions over the Mediterranean Sea to Europe – millions fleeing war zones and fleeing economic conditions in Mexico, the Philippines, Africa . . .  new technologies destroying traditional jobs so we are working longer in poorer paying jobs, migration to cities, shortage of water in more and more parts of the world, mono-cultures, rising income inequalities. And nobody will protect us and our children from the dark consequences of these changes but us, we ourselves.

How do we live in a system without exploiting ourselves or the others or the scarce resources? More positively, how do we live a long life with no hunger, no pain, living a fulfilling life?  How do we live in a society that gives more back than it takes, that consumes less resources than it re-creates?

Aren’t we living in a time-frame that needs rethinking? And this thinking can’t come from the current “masters”, the West, America or Europe. It is more likely that new thinkers will come up with more sustainable ideas in the East.

Will the Philippines be just a follower or can Filipinos perhaps breed a class of new leading philosophers? Can they help guide the world into a brighter future for all of us? They are at the cross routes of East and West, the old and the new, supporting an Abrahamic religion in the East. The Philippines experiences extremes in wealth and extremes in poverty, in climate conditions and other natural conditions, in language diversity . . . she has antennas in every corner of the world, a young and ambitious population. Breaking out of traditions here is a necessity.

All is set here to come up with new ideas.

Philosophical Base of the Current World

The current globalized wave of values came with the American Revolution and the Age of Enlightenment in the 17th century. A mini ice age had reduced food production and created unrest. A new middle class was struggling for more influence. The poignant Atlantic slave trade was at its height. Hence, new thoughts arose about equality, human rights and empirical thinking.

Spinosa, Diderot, D’Holbach, Kant and Voltaire . . . came up with new ideas, beliefs in a creative force, and reason as the ultimate justification. Happiness became our purpose, or “volupté” for the French, the pleasure of the senses. All this with the recognition that we needed others for our own happiness and the recognition that our inborn empathy doesn’t want to see others suffer. Deism arose, a superficial religion as an alternative to an authoritarian Church.

All these ideas were squarely the opposite of the conventional ones, but eventually they prevailed. Gone were the exclusive powers of the rulers given by the Divine, the monopoly of the guilds, and the ultimate justification only to be found in the Bible.

In this new philosophical thinking, the economic ideas of Adam Smith came to fruition with his ideas of “free market” and the invisible hand.

The “Enlightened” World

The new rational thinking and the increased freedom generated rapid economic growth, mainly based on extraction, extraction of less powerful regions, less powerful people, less powerful species. But we could enjoy improved food production, efficient manufacturing, healthier living conditions and literacy. At first they came with the uneasy cost of the direct laborers around us. Later, after many strikes and the achievements of stronger workers unions in the West, a “New Deal World” arose, pushing the uneasy cost of workers far away to Bangladesh or China.

The leading culture became a bourgeois culture. A strict split arose between the private sphere and public sphere (but for Google and the NSA). Globalization became an equalizer towards lower salaries, lesser benefits, longer working hours. Growing inequality. Attractiveness or necessity of the urban life. Smaller families, core families, broken families. Living with ever narrower blinkers.

Also, our blue marble planet let us down with its limited resources of energy, water and clean air. Our farmers were pressed into mono-cultures and inefficient food like pork and beef. Efficient manufacturers saturated the markets with essential goods. Coca Cola and Mercedes became indispensable in the middle of the deserts or in the middle of the jungle, not to mention in China. New spheres of life had to be commercialized to create new markets, such as the sphere of recreation, of belonging and social communications. Of love and grief . . . all available now at a price.

How much stretch is left in the current growth model? Or do enlightenment values as a basis for the free market model need revisiting?

When Breakthrough Changes Happen

Things seldom happen out of the blue sky. Most often they are interrelated:

  • Communication leaps. Then, by an explosion of letter writing and new debate groups like the Free Masons and the Illuminati. Today, with an explosion of social media and debate blogs such as this one.
  • Scientific leaps. Then, in basic physics, chemistry, geology. Today, in understanding the human genome with designer babies on the horizon; the 3D knowledge of proteins in the Proteopedia website, a daily increasing inventory of more than 100,000 pages, including the protein unfolding possibilities; brain mapping and, due to Moore’s law, a new kind of artificial intelligence; nano technologies; . . . past the God-particle.
  • Shifts in religious beliefs. Then, from rigid Churches into a vaguer, flexible Deism. Today, the Catholic Church is out of sync again, the rise of Salafist Muslims, the Chinese new mix of beliefs.
  • Culture leaps. Then, the new music of Haydn, Mozart, new writers as Goethe, Voltaire. Today, thousands of fast-changing new sub-cultures come and go as greens or vegans, surfers or rollerbladers, Hentai or Super Mario . . . A current addiction to the entertainment industry, because we are very seducible. It is commercially so much more interesting to organize entertainment than hold a debate on political options.
  • Status. Then, from being based on position to being based on (encyclopedic) knowledge. The passion of knowing. Today, status is based on your consumption level. The passion of consuming. Welcome to the mall.
  • Philosophy. Then, from an emphasis of the absolute and divine as reflected in monarchy, nobility and clergy to the rational as reflected in human rights and the encyclopedia. Today, from an emphasis on the economic and free markets to ???

Why these “???” ? Are we stuck in the old model? Like smokers, we stay addicted to having more, and to growth. Even if neither the free market nor its foundations are a law of nature. Even knowing that every model is not true, that it is only valid until a new and better one arises. Then, where are the new Spinosa’s, the new Kants, the new Voltaires, the new Jeffersons?  Let them stand up in India, China, Korea or here in the Philippines!

 (In the mean time I find a lot of inspiration by Philipp Blom and Peter Singer.)

What We Need.

Sustainability. To give back more than we take and create more than we consume.

The end of poverty. And poverty not so much as the lack of material things, but as the lack of opportunities. It is about restoring social skills, getting the poor out of isolation, giving them the means and respect not to be second class citizens.

We need a discourse on values and a discourse on deeds.

We need an analysis of cause loops: current results => underlying (models, processes,) actions? => Based on what beliefs / values / intentions? – together with validation loops and surrounding “noises”. We need an analysis of the result loops too:  Beliefs / values / intentions => (models, processes,) actions => results –  together with its feedback loops and surrounding “noises”. Where is the blog of the new Illuminati? Where do we find them?

Included in this new philosophy might be the underlying beliefs that resulted in the Filipino resilience, the Filipino social skills, the Barangay as an “independent, self-controlling” unit, the Filipino satisfaction in helping others, the ease with which inequality is accepted, the ability to be unaware of and neglect the past, the Filipino “light” approach to everything . . .

Excluded should be the Filipino lack of planning and preparedness, the Filipino mendicancy, the Filipino face-democracy, the ease with which inequality is neglected, the ability to be anchored in the past, the Filipino macho debate culture . . .

Who are the Filipino thinkers to guide us, to describe a new and better philosophical model? Who will be the philosophical “diplomats” convincing the world of this new and better model?

211 Responses to “The Philippines: New thinkers wanted”
  1. i7sharp says:

    “Imagine the year 500,000 CE…”

    Will there even be a Philippines as we know it – in 5,000 CE (let alone 500,000 CE!)?

    • Joe America says:

      The reference link is a quote from the bible. As I have encouraged others, because this is a discussion thread, links should be explained so that readers understand the relevance to the article. I have no idea what point you are making, and I would prefer that readers not have to jump around to get to the meanings. I would note that your comments almost always contain a link to one of your Yahoo groups, and that is a form of self-promotion, or spam, that I’d rather not see here. The purpose of the blog is original discussion.

      Thank you.

      • josephivo says:

        “Will there even be a Philippines as we know it?”

        To answer your question: Compare the Philippines 3000 years ago with today, then they had no smartphones, no BPO centers, no SM malls, no bishops… Extrapolating to the future there is a realistic chance that the Philippines 3000 years from now might be slightly different from today, indeed.

        But a careful reader would have observed that the article is not only about the Philippines. This careful reader might have observed too that the world is bigger than the Philippines alone, even that some of the global changes are affecting the Philippines. So the above question reflects either the lack of ability or the lack of intention to read carefully.

        • i7sharp says:


          A cursory glance of the i7weeks page alone shows you the term “Prophetic Timeline” of the world into which even Sir Isaac Newton had looked into.
          Did you see or try the link on “Mathematical Precision”?

      • sonny says:

        “I have no idea what point you are making,…”

        i7sharp, I have to say the same thing. I honestly tried.

      • i7sharp says:

        “… your comments almost always contain a link to one of your Yahoo groups, and that is a form of self-promotion, or spam, that I’d rather not see here.”

        Consider this:

        – In what way?

        – Pray tell, for what?

        How would you have liked presented the data or information (on Pampanga) that I had shared?
        How would you have learned more easily how to get the similar dataset for, say, Biliran?
        I hope you have at least noted that I had created the data many years ago.

        btw, a few months back, didn’t you want DILG to take note of what I had already done or am doing?

        • Joe America says:

          Now you are being argumentative. Josephivo’s blog is about new thinking. Your comment was a link to a bible quote at one of your Yahoo sites. Original discussion is not a difficult concept to grasp. As editor, that’s what I encourage. Links are useful when they are pertinent to the discussion and I ask that their relevance be explained so a reader knows why he is clicking over. Why are you fighting the issue? Your posts and links to your own sites are either spam or an extreme vanity, as they typically do not address the subject in question. Citing one that was helpful misses the point.

          What would make the point on the comment in question meaningful is explaining the relevance of the bible quote to the topic. Not arguing with the editor because he wants pertinent discussion in his blog.

          • Joe America says:


            1. Comments should be original discussion pertinent to the blog topic, or branching out from it as a natural stream of thought.
            2. Links supporting the discussion are acceptable, to either cite a resource or provide interested readers with elaboration.
            3. The relevance of the links should always be explained as a courtesy to readers. Links are secondary to the original discussion.
            4. Self-promotion and advertising are not proper uses of the blog. I grant certain courtesies to fellow bloggers to promote a strong blogging community in the Philippines, but references should be used with discretion.

      • neo canjeca says:

        Joe, I like to comment on the article title : The Philippines: New Thinkers Wanted. In one angle this title is crazy. We have now lots of new thinkers from college and corporate firms, they are growing every year these NEW THINKERS THINKING OLD THINKS. Watch the youngish members of Congress graduates from sectarian and state universities they are new thinkers thinking old bad things for family dynasty and more money . What the country needs are old and new thinkers thinking along new science and technology, new politics and new morality and even new religion.

        It’s presumptuous but I prefer a title: The Philippines: Wanted Thinkers of the New. It doesn’t follow that New Thinkers think of new or current ideas and actions like it doesn’t follow that a rapist or a rebel once elected gets freed from jail or condoned of his crime .

        What I like to read here Joe is : The Philippines Needs Straight and Outside-the-Box Thinkers in the Three Branches of Government and Media. But that will be neither here nor there.

        • josephivo says:

          Thinkers of the new, correct. But I’m not as pessimistic. 12 million OFW’s and not all are caretakers. If a new administration could build on the progress of the current one. K12 and an increasing education budget with much less “leakage”… change might happen fast and furious. Look what Korea achieved in a 20 years timespan, or Singapore or China. And not all in life is about consumption or GDP.

          • Juana Pilipinas says:

            I agree with your position about K-12 education, joseph. From my personal experience, a lot of first world countries look at a Philippines’ 4 year degree as a vocational degree or equivalent of a junior college education (2 year associates degree). A lot of educated and experienced Filipinos are placed in junior or clerical positions until they go back to college and secure a degree in the adopted country. Having K-12 education plus international accreditation for colleges/universities will put Philippines education up to par with first world requirements. This will level the global playing field for all Filipinos.

            • Joe America says:

              It is incredible to me that intelligent people like Senator Trillanes don’t have the wherewithal to solve or weather the problems created by this dramatic transition. They’d rather be stuck in an educationally deficient world than bear a little pain to get competitive. Sacrifice is so hard for some.

              • I hope I understood correctly what I heard 2 nights ago about the private schools complaining of billions of pesos estimated loss in opportunity income (from fresh enrollments) because of K-12 education. I was not paying attention as I was busy perusing a contract.

                If this is the basis of Trillanes’ action on this subject, I am so disappointed, I feel let down, after his brave records of defying Gloria, Enrile, and now Binay. Why is he now protecting the interests of these educational entrepreneurs?

                What I know is that the government must protect the interest and welfare of the majority (the youth of the whole country) rather that the minority businessmen.

              • Joe America says:

                Trillanes’ argument is legalistic, saying that the K-12 program ought not be implemented until more classrooms are built and low salaries of teachers are corrected. Because DepEd has not done these things, he argues, they have not yet fulfilled their constitutional mandate. I share your dismay. Small thinking. Obsessing over process rather than vision and progress.

  2. andrewlim8 says:

    I once came upon an article by Leloy Claudio in Rogue magazine where he argues that the Filipino public intellectual has largely disappeared.

    Before, the ilustrado led the charge, being free from the drudgery of making ends meet. Claudio argues that today’s economic elite have become pedestrian in their intellectual pursuits, and I would agree with him. Rather than pushing the boundaries of human knowledge, they are content building malls and condos, backing politicos, etc. Not that there’s no added value to these, but it is far too little compared to what other cultures can produce. Yes they collect art, but do they produce art?

    My wife and I have this hobby of spending time in traffic discussing things like these sometimes, and one theory we went back and forth on was the climate – where it can be argued that the availability of produce whole year round, the relatively easy way of managing your life in a tropical country does not push one to think and create to the edges of one’s limits, compared to those living in harsh cold climes, where one is forced to plan, prepare and understand the universe more intensely.

    But I do not know how valid this view is, or is it just a colonialist’s opinion? aha ha ha ha 🙂

    • josephivo says:

      Conservation laws. Conservation of energy, it is not created but changes in nature chemical, electrical, thermal, mechanical, nuclear…. (and yes there is Einstein with e=mc2). So I also believe in the conservation of wisdom, with its nature is changing. That’s part of the argument of the article. The old wisdom is/has to morph in new wisdom.

      The Greek ratio, the European renaissance man, the American economic free market might lose relevance. So what the new generation, the migrants (and new Chinese in the Philippines), the Indian farmers are discussing might sound barbaric to some of us. But a new “humane” model has to arise. Sustainability and survival skills/knowledge will be more prominent. There will also emerge top-thinkers, followers and pariahs in the new philosophies. The 9% white people less prominent.

    • neo canjeca says:

      “Filipino public intellectual has largely disappeared” beg to disagree a bit there. There are a few still around quiet and disgusted because they saw others bought and prostituted. Some are in the three branches and in printed media . Think of FSJ thinking of RS, JL or EM. or the late RC and ODC.

  3. Joe America says:

    With the globe getting crammed with people, and we read of typhoon and earthquake slaughter every other day, life will become cheaper. The extremists like ISIS obviously hold that it is almost worthless already.That Philippine year-round growing season that Andrew mentions will look increasingly yummy to the hungry nations. I think human brain-power is grossly over-rated, as we still have not mastered the trick of civility even though we have been reading for a long time.

    I foresee a period of natural and humanly animalistic cruelty coming down the pike. This fear was heightened by our two-month severance from the communicating world after Yolanda. We had no services for one week and people were getting desperate. They were shooting birds for something to eat, and were not able to go anywhere because the gas had run out or was being black-marketed at double normal prices.

    So I tend to think that the intellectualism of hope or promise is rather wasted when what we will see is down and dirty. What is needed is an intellectualism of survival.

    In that debate, the question is, will one survive better as a group, and how big should that group be? Or should one become exceedingly nasty as an individual?

    Sorry to be so cheery this evening.

    • Survival intellectualism. I agree. Be assured that a lot of people in your old country had been taking steps on that front. A lot of studies and experimentation are being done in biomimicry, sustainability, harnessing natural fuel and energy, back to basic lifestyle and much more. Of course we have the doomsday preppers too. 🙂

      • Joe America says:

        Let me continue a little dialogue with myself, ala Irineo, and I hope he is well, even if a tad quiet right now. I’ve read the other comments, even MRP’s, and will continue with my thought of survival intellectualism, as elaborated in your real-world examples.

        One thing that strikes me is that absorption with social media is going down the wrong path. It teaches skills and reliance that will disappear in an instant in a great disaster, natural or manmade. It teaches no reliance on anything that matters in a survival mode.

        I agree with LCX that faith ought also be realigned along survival mode. And alliances for the nation. I think the old concept of sovereignty ought to be thrown out because it is a circle with no union to any other state. What we want is a lifeline to every state willing to provide it. Sovereignty is loyalty to loyalty to groups of people elsewhere. Not loyalty to a state, Philippines. But loyalty to loyalty.

        So forget about fighting and bickering about history with America, form a lifeline to America and be loyal to it, because when China comes hunting for rich Philippine farmlands to feed her hungry hordes, that lifeline will already have submarines here and nukes at the ready, and satellites to blast China’s war satellites out of the skies. Then the resilient Filipino laboring community, skilled at living off and MANAGING the land, can pass the vital foodstuffs up the lifeline to America, a nation that may be returning to the days of great desert, as we watch.

        Have other loyalty lines to Japan and Australia and even Malaysia and others who abide by the basic rule of survival intellectualism, willingness to sacrifice for others in the loyalty chain.

        • I think the incumbent President is sharing your brainwave patterns. He is thinking in terms of power through diplomacy, of networking with other nations’ leaders for mutual benefit, of co-existing harmoniously with the world as a team player with something to offer. The Philippines is no longer seen as a mendicant. It is a rising star that can pay its own way and can be generous to other nations in need.

          • Joe America says:

            Indeed, I took from him to envision sovereignty to be to the lifelines that keep us secure and healthy, rather than narrow, rigid loyalty to “our kind”. In the future, “our kind” will be just like every other kind, a blend of races. In that regard, the Philippines has a head start, but still acts the super-nationalist, against her own best interest (in my opinion).

            • Juana Pilipinas says:

              I agree, but not all is lost. Enthusiasm about new ways of thinking by people like you, the contributors of this blog and others who want a better Philippines will continue to be the drip of water that will dissolve the rock of super-nationalism and misguided communism.

        • karl garcia says:

          I believe this article is the sequel to the ” Myth of Sovereignty”,I was reminded of that article Joe and Joseph.(add to that the art the article on atheists).
          I think survival intellectualism, should encompass all paradigms on defense and security and sustainable development and foreign relations.

          • Joe America says:

            Indeed, but Joseph launched me into a solution, that being a loyalty to lifelines. He demands that we bust all preconceptions and bindings to the past apart in order to think refreshed.

            • josephivo says:

              Skip the hypocrisy, look at current realities. Look at the revolutionary changes in the pipeline too. Think at what is feasible more than what could be hypothetically ideal.

              • Joe America says:

                Reality is over-population, food shortages, intense storms, and murderous people. I think the vision, or the ideal, sets the direction and ought to be imagined, and then the path to get there considers how to manage the practicalities that people throw trash out the bus when they really ought not, for their own well-being and that of their kids.

        • sonny says:

          This seems to be in line even with just a superficial scan into Chinese economic bubble. No matter that they are a major creditor to the US economy. Many empty Chinese malls and empty factories attest to the fact that they need to feed an enormous population and stoke an economic machine that needs every drop of energy it can squeeze.

  4. Karl garcia says:

    Lcpx asked about think tanks in the Philippines and based from what I gathered most are connected to the government like PIDS for economic policies,NDCP,etc all for policies.Our thinkers are for policy making,I guess most are economists,retired security personnel in case of NDCP and the academe.I hope Lpcx continues with that article where he wants to about think tanks
    Think tanks consist of thinkers,right?

    Joseph You are a consultant and a blogger, you are a thinker.
    For new thinkers, I don’t allow my son to use social media because he is just 8 years old,but he told me his classmates has accounts, there you go,young kids, young thinkers.

    Sustainable development-.meeting the needs of the present without forgetting the future.
    With all the planning going on,the best laid plans always go awry.

    When things go bad , a disaster happen we tell our leaders has lack of foresight.

    Like a ship crew radioing for help because the ship had an accident and He says I’m sinking, the one at the other end asks; what are you thinking?

    • Juana Pilipinas says:

      I applaud you for being a good parent, Karl.

      The comment below is a post from the last blog but I think it is also relevant here. I believe that parents CAN teach their children how to be successful in life:

      “Interesting write up by a motivational speaker. If you keep on reading till he gets to the habits, a lot of them are universal:

      • Karl garcia says:

        Thank you Juana, I will read the link now.

        • karl garcia says:

          I am reminded of crab mentality,when the author said Most parents teach children that being rich is evil, at the same time I am also reminded of oligarchs and elitists.Maybe because I am overthinking.

          • Juana Pilipinas says:

            I also think that you are overanalyzing the message of the article, Karl. Most of the time, American writers are direct to the point and there is no need to read between the lines. He is actually saying that parents have to teach their children that rich people are not evil. To the contrary, I think he is saying that children need to know that having money is not bad, what one does to get it and how one uses is what could equate into evil or good. It is not the money, it is the person wanting or handling it. That is why it is important to instill character in our children so they will do the right thing when they grow up.

            Please elaborate on why you felt the writer is sourgraping. I am interested because I did not feel that about his message and I want to see where you are coming from.

            • karl garcia says:

              I actually agree wholeheartedly with the article. I am justifying the why people think being rich is a bad thing, at first I mention the “universal'” attribute of crab mentality, where people envy the successful ones, then the presence of the oligarchy and elitists are the two attributes that drive most people to teach their kids that being rich is a bad thing.Notwithstanding my over analysis, the article is spot-on.

              • Ah, I get you now. I misunderstood what you wrote. My bad, Karl.

              • karl garcia says:

                Without getting into a loop of self blaming(I really wanted to say,no it’s my bad),clarification is always important,as Edgar said it is better than having misinterpretations. 🙂

  5. Juana Pilipinas says:

    “Will the Philippines be just a follower or can Filipinos perhaps breed a class of new leading philosophers?”

    I think Philippines is fully capable of breeding thinkers, tinkerers and problem solvers. It also has a reserve of mentors among OFWs and OFIs. I think it will happen in my lifetime. I am very positive about that.

  6. Micha says:

    Energy source will be big issue for sustainability. Humans will have to find a way to wean itself from fossil fuel. Global warming is real and its effects will be catastrophic for all species, including us. Norway’s pension fund, considered the largest in the world, last week joined a growing list of players to divest from businesses related to coal.

    Meralco and NPC should also find a way to generate electricity other than coal fired power plants such as those in Sual, Pangasinan. Solar panels are getting cheap. Homeowners in California are finding it more practical to generate their own solar electricity and distributing those that they could not consume to the main grid.

    I wonder why a tropical haven such as ours would not go solar too.

    • josephivo says:

      Energy sources and energy efficiently. Only 2% of the energy of the petrol in a car is used to move a person of 80kg , 98% is wasted: move 1,200 kg car, thermal efficiency, internal friction…..

  7. “Will the Philippines be just a follower or can Filipinos perhaps breed a class of new leading philosophers? Can they help guide the world into a brighter future for all of us? They are at the cross routes of East and West, the old and the new… Who are the Filipino thinkers to guide us, to describe a new and better philosophical model? Who will be the philosophical “diplomats” convincing the world of this new and better model?”

    This article is full if vitality and possibilities… It’s an awesome piece, josephivo, Thanks! I’ll contribute more, it’s Sunday morning here and I have to run. But since it’s Sunday I’ll leave this one thought…

    “supporting an Abrahamic religion in the East”

    I’d go with complete abandon of Abrahamic religions.

    If you want sustainability, more giving less taking, then Jesus’ one liner about giving everything you have to the poor and following him, falls flat as it has for centuries now. The schizophrenic nature of the Jewish books and the exclusivity of the Quran, these faiths will only stifle, not expand the mind.

    If religion’s really that important, expand your search into India and look into religions that have strict vegetarian diets, and actually live day-in and day-out what Jesus spoke about and what John the Baptist practiced.

  8. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    The New Think. Old Filipino responses. No New Think. What is pathetic about this news article is THEY ARE NOT ELABORATING THE 1,300 ERRORS. Very Old Think.

  9. jameboy says:

    Will the Philippines be just a follower or can Filipinos perhaps breed a class of new leading philosophers? Can they help guide the world into a brighter future for all of us?
    Filipino thinkers for the world? Ummm, that’s a question requiring deep thinking. One, is there a need for new thinkers or philosophers? And in what field of philosophy do we need a new crop of thinkers for? Second, why Philippines? I mean, we’re up to here with regard to putting our own house in order to be occupied by the issue about future thinkers. An issue way out there in terms of relevance and priority vis-a-vis the Filipinos.

    It is not a question of us being a follower or leader on the issue but a question of necessity if such endeavor is what the country needs at the moment. We can’t even have our native philosophers to guide the destiny of this country and here we are pondering the possibility of Filipino thinkers leading the world to the future and beyond? Don’t get me wrong, I like the romance in the idea and thinking of intellectual matters is a good exercise of the mind but I’d rather we deal with reality with practicality.

    We have enough free thinkers in the country that I rather see succeed in guiding us to a better, brighter and richer future first than focus outside where they have stiff competition. I don’t see an immediate need for new thinkers or philosophers because I believe that we already have enough thinkers in the history of the world and the ideas they propagated and shared continuous to be as relevant, as truthful and as important today as when they first shared them with us.

    Free thinkers are a dime a dozen wherever we go. And most of the time what they have are borrowed or recycled concepts and ideas that is no longer original. 👶

    • josephivo says:

      Yes there are plenty of minor problems to be solved too, such as hunger, inequality, China, but those can be delegated. Let us dream and concentrate on the real questions. Why are we here? Where do we have to go? What is allowed, what is not allowed?

      And is hypocrisy good or bad? If it is bad, why is it then the main component of most Philosophical systems? Cristian: Turn the other cheek? Give all possessions to the poor?… Age of Enlightenment: Liberty, Equality, Fraternity??? All fundamental but all 100% absent.

      Dreaming big should be allowed. What is life without dreams?

      • jameboy says:

        I agree, we all can and should dream. Better still, we should accompany our hopes for better future with dreams.

        As to the idea you’re advancing, I’m ready to modify my position. I’m for new thinkers that will help make the country better. I’m for new thinkers that will help set us free from the clutches of political prostitution where patronage politics and corruption rules. I’m for new thinkers that will formulate philosophies and creed that will give hope for our people and assure them that, through hard work and unity, tomorrow is ours to claim. I’m for new thinkers that will set us free from the rigidity and pretenses of spiritual doctrines and the strict moral principles of the moralists in our midst that have made the country a prisoner of the past. I’m all for anything that will benefit the country.

        But new Filipino thinkers for the world at large? That’s not a dream, that’s a nightmare. 👮

        • This paradigm shift is most welcome, jameboy.

          As for your last 2 sentences: WHY NOT? Why would it be a nightmare? There are plenty of Filipinos all over the world that are renowned for their contribution in a gamut of beneficial fields.

          • jameboy says:

            Thank you for inquiring. That only means you want me to explain. So here goes.

            My position is all about priorities. I’m all for the most important and relevant matters in terms of what is good for us, Filipinos, or our country. Call me selfish or ingrate or whatever but I look at it on the point of view of someone who is confronted by myriad of problems in his own house that he doesn’t have the time to focus and spend his time outside without further making his problems even worse. There’s more to do at home and we cannot make a difference or create the impact we desire if we’re going to spread thin ourselves by just being everywhere.

            Filipino thinkers helping their country is a dream that other countries share with us. We are at the stage that restricts us to look for ourselves first and then, based in our capacity, extend our service with others internationally.

            It is a nightmare to be able to contribute in the concerns of the world but at the same time continue to have the perennial social, economic, political or whatever problems we have back home. I’m not saying we shut out and deny ourselves any involvement to what’s going on outside. I’m simply saying we should put more dent or emphasis on our own situation at home because there are more pressing problems here that needs to be taken care of.

            You said there’s plenty of Filipinos all over the world contributing in various fields. That’s fine and we should celebrate that but nothing’s wrong in having the Filipino-first mentality when it comes to doing good and beneficial things. 👦

            • Juana Pilipinas says:

              I do not have a problem engaging with you when you are not berating me or the other members of the Society, jameboy.

              There’s nothing wrong with looking out for our countrymen first but I’d say get on with the times. A lot of Philippines’ problems are universal: global warming, natural disasters, poverty, food/energy shortages, income inequality, corruption and discrimination to name a few. There is a saying, “Think globally. Act locally.” The gist of it is, we are all global citizens and we are all interdependent. We can help others by helping ourselves. There’s no need to shoo away “foreign” people with good intentions and it will not hurt to listen to what they have to say before saying, “Been there, done that. Read the book. Ate the sandwich.” The usual refrain in your posts is: “There’s nothing wrong here. The status quo is just fine.” Please correct me, if I am wrong.

              • jameboy says:

                You are correct, you wrong. Let me explain.

                I was very clear and categorical in what I want to see happen with regard to the idea of having ‘new thinking’. In other postings on this blog, you will see I never expressed my opposition either by impression or implication that I’m “shooing away foreign people”. I never said never to listen nor declare that there’s nothing wrong and it’s fine here. None of that. You read my posts and my explanation why I chose to not go along completely with the idea of the article. In my last response to Joe, way down below, I even credited josephivo for his idea.

                I think that’s enough for now and I hope I addressed your concern. If additional explanation is necessary I’ll be glad to accommodate it in the time I have right now. 👋

  10. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    America is built by immigrants Italians, Irish, Germans, UKinians, Chinese among others Filipinos THAT is according to Filipinos. I hear Filipino-“Americans” claim “This country, America, is the land of immigrants!” Their rallying cry! Filipino-“Americans” are saying, since they are immigrants they helped build America. I was exiled to America since I can remember I still cannot remember if my parents, siblings and I ever made life-altering contributions to America what I can tell: AMERICA ALTERED OUR LIVES AND OUR WAYS. America should be thankful WE did not alter their lives OUR WAYS!

    When I mention “imported half-bred half-white Foreign beauty queens” Filipinos attack with: “PHILIPPINES IS A MELTING POT!” Other way of saying, PHILIPPINES TOO IS A LAND OF IMMIGRANTS! If so, what has the Filipinos learned from IMMIGRANTS? Or, was it COLONIZERS? The Filipino should remember THE EXISTING COLONIZERS with their adored skin colors and Hollywood looks were never involved in shenanigans, corruptions, thieevery ONLY THE BINAY-LOOK ALIKES. Therefore, The Colonizers were honest Filipinos never learned.

    Do they know what they are reading? Of course they do not. They are reading newspapers not really understanding: They cannot understand DEEPLY the meaning of what THE BINAYS, GRACE POES and ROXAXES said. They see the words. They know the meaning of each word. Once the words are strung out in one sentence THEY CANNOT UNDERSTAND IT!!!! THE FILIPINOS ONLY SEE A PICTURE OF FACES ETCHED IN THEIR BRAIN. That is why The Filipinos needed U.P. History Doctorate Professor to help them understand El Felibusterismo and Noli Me Tangere. These two books consists of thousand words string broken in paragraphs and chapters.

    The Filipinos can recite Biblical verses not understanding its meaning. Well, Bible is a beast of a book. What you read is not what it meant. And what it meant is not what is read. It depends on the person reading it and the purpose of his life. To quote ERAP’s famous words that encapsulate the culture of the Filipinos “WEDER-WEDER LANG YAN!” Meaning, IT REALLY DEPENDS.

    The Binays are old school Filipino Thinkers: 100% UNADULTERATED UNREFORMED CROOKS! I thought Grace and Mar were reformed U.S.-inspired new Filipino thinkers. They studied in my country. Lived in my country. Yet, their Quotable Famous Quotes past days ago, in the early days of electioneering, reeks of FILIPINOness. Even without anyone telling me who said those words easily I can know dead away it was uttered by a Filipino like I construct this comment.

    Responses to U.P. trained journalists should be calculated and carefully constructed in precise manner absence of malice and emotion which are OLD THINK in my country NEW THINK in the Philippines.

    I am New Think. Done with Old Think.

  11. Mariano Renato Pacifico says:

    “Sustainability. To give back more than we take and create more than we consume.” – JOSEPHIVO

    Flew from Tuguegarao to Davao City I saw vast expanse of undeveloped land mass from agriculture. Filipinos would rather smuggle ready-made rice and food products than grow it themselves. Owners of these haciendas and estancias never developed these into food producers. I am wonder what they must be thoughting. If the whole Mindoro Island is given to the farmers, IT WOULD BE ABLE TO FEED 100,000,000 FILIPINOS WITHOUT SMUGGLING RICE. They’d rather not. Why?

    It is time the Government take action. The Government can tap Prison Labor. Make these prisoners contribute and pay the society the crimes they have done. Binay would be a good bet … once he is in Prison.

    • sonny says:

      I agree. Iwahig is assigned 45,000 ha. presently. This is larger than many municipalities. Iwahig could be adminstered as a directed economy or corporation model for agri-business, paying for itself and more.

    • Now, you’re talking and I am listening. Harnessing prison labor to solve a deficit in rice production is a great idea. Keep it up, Mariano!

    • chit navarro says:

      The problem with your idea is this:
      Land reform has disabled corporate farming. The Cojuangco’s tried to set up Hacienda Luisita then as a model of corporate farming but the left and whoever saw it as a ploy to evade land reform Who are the corporate farmers now? DOLE maybe for the pineapple plantation, the banana plantation and some vegies… But rice? Who would want to invest in a large tract of land, agricultural equipments (Tractors, planters, fertilizer feeders, irrigation) when there is that Damocles sword over your investment that it and when your company progresses, the militant red will make sure you distribute the land to your farmhands under the land reform act? And what will the farmhands do when they get the money from the Land Bank? Leave the land, go to Manila as if money can be picked up in the streets of Manila and the land is barren and bare, undeveloped, and the poor investor left to his own bankruptcy and just close shop. Good if the money the investor put in came from the banks too (ala BSP building) but if it came from his own savings, etc., then its hard…So tell me, why are there plenty of undeveloped lands? These are the land distributed to the land reform beneficiaries and then left untended because these beneficiaries do not have the funds to develop it again – it needs money to plow and harrow, plant, cultivate and fertilize and harvest….An d farming with a carabao will not give the profit nor the produce oeng ets in a commercially viable operation.

      • Joe America says:

        In the new model I am developing, survival intellectualism, leftists would be banned as disloyal to the state. If they persisted in these kinds of disruptions, they’d likely be shot. Nevertheless, laborers would be empowered as caretakers of the soil and soul.

      • Micha says:

        @chit navarro

        Why does it have to be corporate farming? There was a time when small scale rice farming – individuals owning nothing more than 1 or 2 hectares – was economically productive and feasible by introducing farmer’s cooperatives subsidized by the national gov’t (in the form of irrigation, fertilizer, pesticides) and we became a rice exporting nation.

        Somehow that program of subsidized farming was abandoned at the latter part of Marcos’ years (could be that dollar resource to import fertilizers and pesticides were siphoned off to Switzerland instead).

        Later, President El Tabako made the plight of small farmers worst by introducing the GATT free trade liberalization crap and we were inundated by cheap imported rice from Thailand and Vietnam.

        • josephivo says:

          Correct. the current model of free enterprise is getting overstretched. Economies of scale not working for innovation, producing fragile mono-culture solutions, explosive inequalities.

          Even the World Bank sees small farmers with easy access to credits as most efficient. But Monsanto has better communication channels with politicians and farmers.

            • karl garcia says:

              Juana,here is a study on the state of the MFIs .

              Click to access microfinance-in-the-philippines-habaradas-umali-final-2013.pdf

              “Included in the Top 10 MFIs both in terms of active borrowers and gross loan portfolio are the following (in alphabetical order): 1st Valley Bank (9th in terms of active borrowers and 1st in terms of gross loan portfolio), ASA Philippines (2nd and 4th), ASKI – Alalay sa Kaunlaran, Inc.
              (10th and 7th), CARD Bank (3rd and 3rd), CARD NGO (1st and 2nd), and TSPI – Tulay sa Pag-unlad,
              Inc. (4th and 5th) (see Tables 6 and 7 for details)”

              On its legislation, I saw a bill by senator Bam Aquino and it is already consolidated into a committee report.

              • Juana Pilipinas says:

                Thank you for sharing this excellent paper on the state of Philippines’ micro-finance, Karl.

                The paragraph below sticks in my craw:

                “We must also look more closely into how microfinance services can reach the rural poor, in light of the findings of recent studies that “majority of microfinance funds have gone to urban areas in the richest part of the country, while comparatively little has gone to the poorest provinces” (Micu, 2010, p.4).”

                More power to Bam Aquino. Will he be old enough to succeed Poe as President in 2028? Yup, I am not settling for just 12 more years of good governance. Let’s extend that to 18 years and beyond. 🙂

              • karl garcia says:

                Yes,also if he heeds Giancarlo’s suggestion of exercising,he would be ready by then.

              • @Karl
                🙂 🙂 🙂

        • I agree, I remember listening to a former office mate of mine whose parents contracted a loan to cultivate onions and garlic on a grand scale… their produce were ignored in favor of imported ones from China, needless to say, they were in a quandary on how to repay their loans.

          My uncles in the province raised veggies on a commercial scale also, alas! they had to give away most of them before they rot, as prices reached rock bottom due to imported (or smuggled in?) vegetables from where else – China!

          • Juana Pilipinas says:

            Wow. I am in disbelief on how this economic sabotage is happening. Flooding the market with cheap imports to undermine local products is vile. Our own people are perpetrating this dastardly deed: the importer, the BOC officials, the shipping company owners… All should punished for such repulsive and traitorous act.

            • Joe America says:

              There is a conceptual gap that exists between patriotic ideal as we know it in the US, and the pragmatics of being in power, as it is done here. There is generally no such thing as giving or sacrificing or even being disciplined because people don’t make the connection between national well-being and personal well-being. They see others getting ahead by trampling on others, and so they join the herd. There is no guilt attached to putting others down. That is the problem for the weak to deal with. The joy is in the triumph. It is a lot like debate in blogs, of the style used by the nationalists such as Parekoy. Who cares whom you hurt, even if it is the blog of Raissa, as long as you win personally. The concept of greater good is lost.

        • jtdelapaz says:

          I think Chit describes something similar to what happened to Zimbabwe after land reform. Before land reform, people were working for land owners with large tracts of farmland. And they were producing more than enough agriculture ( even exporting ) through economies of scale.

          After land reform, the new land owners with their small plot of land, cannot anymore qualify for bank loans. Not all of them had farm tractors. Some of them didn’t even have farming knowledge. As a result, agricultural productivity was drastically reduced.


          • Micha says:

            Yes, black native Zimbabweans don’t have much farming skills. It’s the white landed folks who had been doing most of the farming.

            I wouldn’t say the same for Filipinos. We’ve been planting rice for hundreds of years.Just ask the Bontoc Kalinga Apayao natives.

    • chempo says:

      I don’t know what you guys do in your prisons (what I know are drug lords running their rackets, prostitution, part-time guns for hire), in my country (Spore) we have industries withing prison walls. They produce our bread and stuff like that. Fulfills many purposes — good for labour-scarce Spore, prisoners are economically employed (they get some payments that goes into their savings account available on release from prison).
      Just sharing.

      • karl garcia says:

        The latest plans were to setup call centers in prisons.

        • Juana Pilipinas says:

          As a gut reaction, I would say that this is a bad idea. Having criminals getting ahold of private citizens’ information (names, addresses, phone numbers, etc) could be a disaster but let me read the proposal before I keep wagging my tongue. 🙂

          • karl garcia says:

            Same here,a WTF initial reaction.

            • Juana Pilipinas says:

              Read the link where it said Cayetano skirted the security concerns. I need to read up more on this because the article did not quell my fear about this proposal.

      • jameboy says:

        “I don’t know what you guys do in your prisons (what I know are drug lords running their rackets, prostitution, part-time guns for hire), in my country (Spore) we have industries withing prison walls.” – chempo
        You have a point there. Prisoners still able to run their ‘business’ from the inside.

        But to your question, I’m not sure if we can replicate what you have there in Singapore. And I said that based also in what you said in your post.

        “…..good for labour-scarce Spore…..” – chempo
        Right there is the answer. 😯

  12. edgar lores says:

    1. Impressive.

    2. It were as if Josephivo is standing on a peak, seeing the promise of the past, surveying the wreckage of the present, and peering into the future for… something.

    3. So many questions at so many levels in so many domains. All awaiting answers.

    4. Awaiting.

    5. The danger may be in the attitude of waiting, in the expectancy for something new… for breakthroughs.

    6. I would suggest we have found many answers – at the macro level (society) and at the micro level (individual) – but that we just do not fully recognize these answers… or have not fully implemented them.

    7. At the macro level, for example, we know these things:

    o That human rights and freedom are at the core of human dignity.
    o That societies that balance development with concern and care for present needs are better.
    o That governments that regularly consult with the governed are better.
    o That governments that implement and exercise separation of executive, legislative and judicial powers are better.
    o That governments that are secular in character and that recognize diversity are better.
    o That a bridled free market system cognizant of private property works better than a state-managed communistic system.
    o That religions that acknowledge pluralism are better.
    o That the rule of law, at the national and international levels, is better.
    o That the threat of climate change is unambiguous.
    o That peace is better than war.

    8. At the micro level, we know these things:

    o That the paths to individual fulfillment are many and varied:
    – By dedication to a calling or profession
    – By devotion to a cause (e.g., nationalism, women’s rights)
    – By devotion to an institution (e.g., the church, the Rotary Club)
    – By attachment to objects (e.g., stamps, motorcars, the love of one’s life)
    – By attachment to activities (e.g., workouts, martial arts, solitariness)
    o That the meaning of one’s life can be found in one’s self or in others.
    o That faith – in a belief or in reason itself – provides a firm foundation.
    o That the techniques — compassion, meditation (or prayer) — offered by religion work to a great extent.
    o That respect and kindness for all things – one’s self, the other, the environment – will save the day.

    9. The truth is we do not have to await the future to find the answers we are seeking. And it may be a cliche, but we do not have to look outside ourselves to find the answers.

    9.1. The only caveat that I have is that no matter what collective and individual path we take, we must respect others (man and earth), in particular their freedom, their rights and their dignity.

    10. Disclosure: I have found – no, rather, I have reached – a state of personal integration, despite having no faith in any ultimate belief or in reason alone. I would describe my approach as one of personal inquiry and personal confirmation/negation. Here I stand.

    • Joe America says:

      Re. 7, the difficulty is that some bands of peoples don’t agree. They believe in racial and physical dominance, or one religion over another. Peaceful work may be a weakness in that scenario. We remain animals, after all. Your ideals are great but the selling of them to hardheads may be difficult.

      • edgar lores says:

        By the same token, no new ideas or paradigm will ever work… because there will be no universality, there will always be naysayers.

        The solution, I would think, is to make the naysayers an ineffective minority… until they see the error of their ways.

      • josephivo says:

        In a normal population you always have a small group of pioneers, welcoming the new ways of doing things. You have a large group “one proof persons” or 1pp’s, people seeing the need for change but not daring to take the initiative. An equally large group is happy the ways things are or too lazy to move an inch, the “10 proof persons” or 10pp’s, but if the majority moves they follow, too afraid to be different. At last you have the “outlaws”, people thriving on going in the opposite direction, often experts in political games, sabotage, playing the person, not the idea.

        Movement depends on the right strategies, first encouraging and creating cohesion for the “pioneers”, then providing new opportunities, educating the 1pp’s, eventually the 10pp’s will follow. Forget about the noisy, irritating “outlaws”. Often you see all energy spoiled in trying to convert “outlaws”.

        The new philosophers will not only have to come-up with better ideas, the also will need a clever propagation strategy.

    • josephivo says:

      Point 4 is very to the point. Currently technologies and scientist drive the future at scary speed. Politicians, philosophers or religious leaders, people at large, all have no clue what is going on. Scientists often lack the larger picture. Entrepreneurs utilize the new technologies to capture new spheres of life into their empires. Waiting is giving your destiny away.

      I would like to agree with point 7, but the facts. Evidence based reality versus wished reality. Inequality. Exhaustion of some natural resources. Climate change. Still the unproportioned influence of the 9% white people. Still extended crude poverty… Our old philosophies accommodate hypocrisy too easy.

      In point 8, I miss the fact that we only are what others tell us we are. Without mirrors, being the others, we can only see part of ourselves and our brain, spine and heart are inside, only to be observed indirectly. We are social animals. The wellbeing of our small intimate circle, our larger social circle, the universe as a hole.

      Point 9, answers for today might be irrelevant tomorrow. Realities of tomorrow will need answers too: designer babies, distribution between peoples of scarce water, artificial intelligence and self-driving everything, 200 million Filipinos…

      10 Disclosure: I haven’t a clue, I just enjoy the rollercoaster of life.

    • andrewlim8 says:


      Re no. 10, that is enlightenment! 🙂

  13. karl garcia says:

    I hear unoriginal and recycled again from , jameboy. In case of legislation I have the same sentiments.
    Speaking of which, where everything is a deal and there are deal breakers.

    For the compromise on log ban, the selective log ban lobby prevailed and the total log ban lobbyist bescame the noise makers.

    That is the template I can think of for many examples like mining,fishing,real estate,land reform.
    I hope soon enough,we no longer use the landed elite and the oligarch mantra,because not all of them especially the young have the same mindset from the oligarchs of old.

    For now old thinking still prevails,but new thinking will prevail soon enough.

    josephivo is a futurist.
    On movies I watched Interstellar and Tomorrow land are two choices (movies outcome) we have for our future.

    • karl garcia says:

      “Skip the hypocrisy, look at current realities. Look at the revolutionary changes in the pipeline too. Think at what is feasible more than what could be hypothetically ideal.”

      For the current situation, I had my rants in the past,. to add to that Climate change ,global warming,disaster unpreparedness,our defense,etc.

      We have laws,we have proposals. The feasibility of our laws have been studied and debated upon, all are meant to be implementable. Why do they remain only as good laws and not implemented?

      Sorry, your caveat of macho debate is one of the reasons I have to touch on.
      The thing, I said about total log ban vs selective logban. Developers would complain that they have a wonderful plan for this mountaintop place, the problem is there are trees and indigenous folks, so the debate that was supposed to be resolved becomes unresolved again.
      we have urban planners,one famous one Falafox is involved in many plans(is he the only one in the country?),but I still keep on wondering why he is the first to complain if everything is topsy turvy.(I have mentioned the pending nation land use legislation before).

      • Your mention of Architect Falafox had me recalling again the great plan by the World Bank during the Marcos regime to solve flood problem in Metro Manila.

        The original plan was 3-pronged:

        a) Cainta floodway to act as reservoir for rainwater from the eastern highlands of Montalban , etc. – done

        b) Napindan Channel designed to block the excess water from entering Manila – done

        c) the 3rd which was not done (due to fund shortage attributed to corruption?) should have been the Parañaque spillway to redirect all the excess water to Manila Bay.

        The result – unresolved flooding which became worse, aggravated by local government who keep on wooing (every three years) undisciplined informal settler voters.

        The saddest part of it is the fact that a number of manipulated youth (some of which belong to MRP’s UP) think that Marcos was the greatest president ever.

        What a crap.

        • karl garcia says:

          Yes,Falafox keeps on reminding us of the spillway proposal. A literal pipe dream.

          • But wait, there is a another grand development in the offing, some joint undertaking by the big guns in real estate development…

            If I remember it right, it will be on Laguna lake shore development with Megaworld of Andrew Tan, SM Prime of Henry Sy, Ayala Land of the Zobels, who else, SMC?, DM Consunji? etc, etc… that would create a a superhighway along the lake shore connecting Laguna, Taguig and Metro Manila, underneath will be a great Venice-like canal for tourist attraction and business establishments all around, all designed to solve the flood problems of Laguna, Taguig, Pasig and the rest of Metro Manila.

            When I read about it, I sighed with relief and whooped in jubilation, at last, a light at the end of a long, long tunnel…I do hope they take into consideration in their plans the fault lines for long term safety.

            I now understood the decision of PNOY to cancel an European contract to dredge Laguna lake because all the dredged waste will be left in the lake shore to be washed out again back to the lake when the rainy season and flood come again.

            The next president will hopefully be able to inaugurate that project. Yey!

            • karl garcia says:


            • Juana Pilipinas says:

              Do you have a link about this development story?

              It will also make me very happy if this plan come to fruition. It will be wonderful to finally see Manila and its suburbs flood free.

              • karl garcia says:

                Wikipedia has an aricle on the Laguna Lakeshore expressway dike.


              • I learned it from Buddy Gomez’s blog, Cyberbuddy… March 5, 2015. I wonder what is current update on this mega project. Excerpts follow:

                The Big One

                This is the Laguna Lakeshore Expressway Dike (LLED) project under the auspices of the Aquino administration’s Public-Private Partnership Project. Completion is expected in 2021. It envisions to provide a new highway on top of a dike that will ease vehicular traffic flow and alleviate floods that are presently the bane of the communities along the western shores of Laguna lake. There are two components:

                1) A 47-kilometer expressway (from Taguig to Los Banos)-cum-dike, a six-lane tollway with 8 interchanges and access roads (Bicutan, Sucat, Muntinglupa, San Pedro, Binan, Santa Rosa, Cabuyao and Calamba). The highway’s alignment is 500 meters from the present shoreline.

                2) A 700-hectare reclamation in the foreshore fronting Taguig and Muntinglupa, along which there will be 7 islands of half a kilometer wide and 15 kilometers long, the horizontal development of which will of course include roads, drainage and open spaces. From lakeshore to the edge of the reclaimed area, a water channel ranging from 100 to 150 meters wide will be created.

                Folks, let loose your imaginations and start day-dreaming. What comes to me at the moment is the spawning of new businesses like, for one example, small watercraft manufacture (and ancillary services) that will feed new leisure and sports activities like boating! Definite economic benefits will ensue. Of course, there will be savings in vehicular operating costs, vast improvements in passenger time and convenience. Appreciation of current land values (and therefore, resultant real estate tax revenues), not to mention added value produced by reclaimed land are givens.

                First in urban renewal

                Putting on my property development hat, it is my well considered view that as a consequence of the new upgraded neighborhood to be delivered by developments in the real estate created via reclamation, it will be very probable that more than any other area in Metro Manila, the eastern side of the Taguig/Muntinglupa geography facing the lake will be primed and ripe for urban renewal. It is logical that because market values will rise, the wherewithal for upgrades and reconstruction will become available. Support financial services will, as a matter of course, be part and parcel of the economic resonance that such a project will produce. The multiplier effect will spin. It is inevitable.

                “The newsiest of newsworthiness is that, under normal conditions, the biggest names in Philippine business, the otherwise, normally winner take all / never yield an inch / we don’t take prisoners crowd, have come to a unity.A union of forces–together, arm in arm–to conquer the holiest of capitalist grails–profits! Ayala Land, Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Henry Sy’s Prime Holdings and Andrew Tan’s Megaworld have joined hands and formed a consortium called Trident Infrastructure & Development Co.. They will vie for the Laguna Lakeshore project and make it a reality should they be the winners of the forthcoming bidding. Each one takes a 25% participation. The pie is deemed large enough to yield sufficiently satisfactory action for each partner. (San Miguel and two other groupings that include non-Filipino international interests have likewise taken out pre-qualification documents). As an aside, I find it funny that this information was originally sourced from a Manila-based foreign news service and utilized by local news outlet-subscribers. Maybe City Desks ought to recalibrate its priorities and balance the front-page prominence of politics and crime with economic news on a daily basis, even if the rest of the item is ‘jumped’….continued in the inside business page!”…


              • Sorry for the long post, got carried away by my enthusiasm.

              • Joe America says:

                Enthusiastic elaborations are most welcome.

              • Thank you, Karl and Mary for the links and info about this amazing project.

  14. sonny says:

    Reality check
    @ Society’s Manila-based blogreaders

    I am including the link from MMDA’s earthquake preparedness. The website was created to help MetroManila residents to keep tab on how to participate in the megacity’s earthquake preparedness. The simulations are for 7.2 magnitude earthquake hitting Manila.

    • josephivo says:

      Being prepared, risk management is basic, part of the foundation and without a foundation a construction will not last it is essential. But our house should be more than a foundation alone. Eventually we will need a living space to enjoy work and recreation.

      • sonny says:

        “I foresee a period of natural and humanly animalistic cruelty coming down the pike. This fear was heightened by our two-month severance from the communicating world after Yolanda. We had no services for one week and people were getting desperate. They were shooting birds for something to eat,…” — Joe

        Joe’s Yolanda was my Ondoy and an overlay of another typhoon following Ondoy. We were made to circle (Asiana flight from Incheon) Aquino International for close to 2 hours. The watery onslaught of Ondoy caught us with the overflow of the Amburayan and Paratong rivers in Ilocos Sur and La Union. Which share of the disaster was going to be visited on us as three feet of riverine flow came into the house? The “severance from communicating world” was as surreal as what Joe’s Biliran felt.

        The reference to the website came with an urgency from the office of Chairman Tolentino. And it sounded like the notice from PhiVolcs was not for something in the remote future, Joseph.

        • josephivo says:

          Yes, but luckily life can be more than preparing for disasters.

          And as civilization is just a very thin coating on our soul, it is indeed necessary to be prepare to avoid falling back at our hunter/gather cruel survival talents. Maybe a subject for a different blog?

          • Joe America says:

            I stumbled upon this column in the Inquirer today.


            The regular column is entitled “Inner Awareness”, and the author, Jaime T. Licauco, explains why in the article entitled “The mind knows no boundaries.” The article, which touts a series of seminars, seems to be aimed directly at that “coating on our soul”, or inside it, that you refer to. Still, I remain confused about what we are trying to do with our new thinking. If it is not to address disasters and the real world around us – murders and inability to talk civilly to one another and rape of the landscape and trains that don’t work right – what’s the point? To feel good as we go off and die?

  15. hackguhaseo says:

    Inspiring read as always, though I have to express doubts when it comes to the possibility of having “Filipino philosophers” or “world leaders” as there are quite a few hurdles to overcome before that even becomes a remote possibility. The biggest is the matter of societal attitude…

    The greatest philosophers, at least most of them, arose from societies already steeped in philosophy, literacy, art and technology. Greece, Rome, Germany, England, Italy and so forth produced great minds because their geo-political and social situations permitted it at the time. We can’t say the same thing about the Philippines at the moment and the majority of those who grew up here…

    I also have to note that Filipinos tend to be too emotional, prideful and too insecure to be anything but argumentative once their own brand of philosophy is confronted (which it inevitably is). Add to that their current lack of knowledge or lack of interest in obtaining knowledge about the most serious problems afflicting the world right now, and…well, it’s not that hard to conclude that the Philippines is about as likely to be a philosophical hot spot as our scientists inventing a cold fusion reactor.


    On the matter of the world and our dwindling resources, I remember reading a paper published in a scientific journal some time ago that it’s too late to do anything. Global warming has hit its stride and in order to stop it, we should all have stopped driving cars around 10 years ago. I’ll post a link when I find it.

    • josephivo says:

      Mostly agree, but outliers exist. But I have seen exceptional IT’ers on TV, an exceptional educational expert too. Lost the names. Cold fusion is a thermodynamic unlikely event, fusion is more a capital issue than a scientific one. Philosophy is not hindered by capital nor physical laws.

      The new philosophy might be more about caring for each other, family ties or close relationships, giving is receiving, healthy utang or dependencies, group knowledge not individual ones, stopping the world because it is fiesta… not all has to be economic or controlled by supply and demand, invisible hands and Monsanto’s. Do not underestimate Filipino values.

      • jameboy says:

        The new philosophy might be more about caring for each other, family ties or close relationships, giving is receiving……
        In terms of philosophy, there’s nothing new in what you enumerated that has never been address or talked about by the great philosophers of the past.

        Maybe it’s about time to shift the focus on new discovery instead of new philosophy. That it would be most beneficial to generate productive and constructive thinking than look for new thinkers to guide or save the world from itself. 👀

        • josephivo says:

          I’m not the new philosopher, I cannot grasp our future planet. I only observe things today as the monopoly of the “homo economicus” – a producer/consumer – with emphasis on consumption. But I want to be a “homo ludens” – a playful man – too, with a childish wonderment.

          Yes what is in the pipeline is enormous. Knowing all our genes, being able to adjust them. Mapping our brain understanding how to manipulate thinking. Knowing all proteins and how they trigger biological reactions. Computers that do not only beat us in playing chess, but intelligence that will lead us not only by driving our cars but reading our minds and anticipate, facilitate the next steps. Connectivity in a 3D virtual world 24/7, wherever you are. Who will have to enjoy all this first, at what cost, what conditions. What does liberty, equality, fraternity mean in this new world? Not only politicians and scientist should start thinking, we “the people” should contribute too, the brightest I call philosophers.

      • hackguhaseo says:

        I don’t know, I always found Filipino values to be wanting. Those have been around a long time and they have brought us nothing. Before the Marcos regime, was it those values that made us one of the most prosperous nations in the world? I hardly think so. But I digress, this is about philosophy, not the economy.

        Speaking of which, I never wrote anything that alluded to your “not all has to be economic or controlled by supply and demand, invisible hands and Monsanto’s” statement. Can you please indicate where I might have done so?

        Finally, I will most certainly underestimate Filipino values – at least those that are doing us no good. i.e. crab mentality, contempt for ambition, worshiping celebrities, bigotry, back-stabbing, subscribing to superstitious nonsense and many others. The “No true Scotsman” argument is not going to work here either as those things are most certainly common among Filipinos.

        • jameboy says:

          Finally, I will most certainly underestimate Filipino values – at least those that are doing us no good. i.e. crab mentality, contempt for ambition, worshiping celebrities, bigotry, back-stabbing, subscribing to superstitious nonsense and many others.
          Oh please, calling human frailties “Filipino values” is not underestimating but actually discriminating. We do not have a patent for those character weaknesses you mentioned. No question you are correct in saying we have those imperfections and I have to admit it remains an obstacle for the country to push forward but we continue to struggle to overcome such frailty. To make it sound as if it’s exclusive to us and call it ‘Filipino values’ is getting to be preposterous already.

          I rather we focus on the positive strides the country has been doing through all this time in spite of years of being treated like a human piñata. We get it and we’re ashamed of all those criticisms being hurled at us like we are a damaged culture, borrowed idea, sick man of Asia, etc. Nobody is denying that we have problems but we should also acknowledge the fact that we’re doing something about it. It may not be enough by the critics’ standards but we’re not lying down and enjoying the screwing. We’re fighting and continue to fight the good fight. The bad guys maybe in the majority or dominating the game oftentimes but there’s plenty of Filipinos that want to improve the situation and defeat the enemies of the good and what is right.

          Proof off that is the positive developments that has happened and been happening with the current administration in terms of addressing graft and corruption on government and providing a new look on how governance should be improved by getting back the trust and confidence of the people. We’re a long way to go towards attaining what our prosperous neighbors have attained but we’re not stopping to improve and better ourselves as a people and country. That should be the focus.

          Which brings me back to the topic. Like I said, I’d rather see new Filipino thinkers coming out and helping not necessarily the world but the country itself by focusing on the productive and substantive aspect of the situation we’re in than parrot those worn-out demeaning and derogatory terms in referring to the country and the people just to make a point of reference. It’s counterproductive. ✌

          • Bert says:

            Nicely said, jameboy, and I agree. Just as I suspected all along even if you pissed me off at times, you are a patriotic Filipino worth my respect and admiration.

            • jameboy says:

              Well, I admire the attitude that you agree with somebody who sometimes pisses you off. Why? Because I feel the same way you do. I also get to be pissed off or knocked down from time to time but I have to carry on because that is the essence of why we have this venue. I’d rather we disagree on issues and piss off each other (without getting personal of course) than to agree on everything or not be able to test the validity or strength of our views for lack of contrary opinion.

              To be honest, I don’t feel or think anything about being patriotic or something in what I say here. It’s just that I’m expressing a view that prefers to prioritize more the necessity and relevancy of things in favor of Filipinos. Like I said previously, it’s like you’re having a problem in your own house and you need to fix it first before focusing on other things outside.

              I admire the concern of others in thinking about the worldly matters and how we can help and be of service to it and we have been doing that in our own small way. It’s just that I’m more in favor of us having the mentality of other countries have with regard to their own country when it comes to doing positive and productive things that would benefit them. 👮

          • hackguhaseo says:

            True enough, those aren’t exclusive to Filipinos, but they are still major factors that hold us back (as you said). We can’t simply turn a blind eye on those issues just to focus on the good ones. That would be like burying our heads in the sand. Filipinos cite and laud their positive traits often enough and when a counterbalance that involves pointing out their faults come up, they shout and scream discrimination, racism and what have you.

            “We get it and we’re ashamed of all those criticisms being hurled at us like we are a damaged culture, borrowed idea, sick man of Asia, etc.” Does this statement apply to the majority of Filipinos? Or will most of our countrymen hiss and spit at you if you criticize even the smallest of their faults?

            Seriously, I’m not trying to start an argument here, but I won’t be a yes-man either.

            Speaking of the positive developments the country has undergone, I would counter that most of that is because we have a president who actually has balls (pardon my crudeness). He pushed for reform, ignored his critics and just went on clearing the driveway. Yet throughout all this, we have Filipinos calling him a traitor, a sell-out, suffering from down syndrome and a bunch of other derogatory statements.

            We also have influential institutions like the CBCP saying that the positive developments are not doing anything for the masses and people actually LISTEN to them. Am I supposed to just ignore that in favor of a more colorful outlook?

            I’m sorry, but as long as Filipinos are exhibiting these traits, I will keep pointing them out. I won’t diminish the strides the country has made though, that would simply be illogical. We are certainly on the right path, but that could quickly change, especially when we consider that this is the nation who voted Nancy Binay into the senate.

            • Joe America says:

              I love it when contributors write my blog headlines for me: “From the nation that brought you Nancy Binay as senator!”

              • It is indeed quite frustrating that we are a nation who voted the Binay father, wife, son daughters, Lito Lapids, the Estrada father, mother and sons, the Revilla father and sons and daughter in law in national and local government offices. It is a also a frustrating fact that majority of our electorates belong to the masa, the classes D & E with a sprinkling of those in the upper classes who enabled these actors and actresses to be elected. When will our masa wake up?

              • Joe America says:

                I think when it makes a difference to them, or they UNDERSTAND that there is a connection between opportunity, and who is elected. The candidates should make that point central to their candidacy, I think.

            • jameboy says:

              Nobody’s suggesting we turn a blind eye on problems that drag us down. And no one is proposing that we bury our heads in the sand. None of that was insinuated in my reaction. What I was imparting was to focus on the positive side of things and not waste our time on rehash and worn-out statements about how faulty we are or what’s wrong with us. Let’s act and stop yapping.

              Is there someone here that can seriously and with all candor tell me that he/she never heard before all those vilifications, including yours, about us? Was there any derogatory statements here or in other fora or blogs for the past 10 or so years that you have encountered about us that you can honestly and truthfully say are new and original ideas and needs to be a subject of discussion?

              Wala na pong bago sa mga sinasabi at pamumunang ginagawa tungkol sa atin bilang tao o bansa. Wala ng bago. Maniwala po kayo wala ng bago. (There’s nothing new anymore in the criticisms about us. Nothing new. Believe me, there’s nothing new.)

              If we’re going to raise a dilapidated idea every time we want to feel good by telling Filipinos how weak and faulty and misguided they are might as well not do it because it will never make a difference. It will only add to the layers of nonsense noises that people will just ignore.

              And no offense meant, it doesn’t take a genius to disparage or criticize someone. I’ve seen/read ignoramuses talk like they know any better only to say something that a billion of people have already said. Kasawa na.

              I say, focus on something that is new and something that has room for positive reaction. Something that will inspire. Something that will engage the people not because you rile them up but because you provoke them into thinking something beneficial to them. Something you thought of brought about by deep concern for the general welfare of your fellow Filipinos and not because it makes you feel good to say it regardless.

              I prefer to take on individual or personal criticisms of public officials or personalities like against Binay or Erap or Gloria or Marcos or Aquino, etc. for they at least provide closure in a sense and make for a worthy topic of discussion. But the wholesale assault of the country using old songs that have not even made it to the Top 40 list is just a waste of time not to mention the irritation it makes.

              Read my lips: It-doesn’t-help-in-any-way.

              You may be happy and satisfied getting it out from your chest but in the scheme of things, it doesn’t amount to anything. 👀

              Your last word. 💬

              • hackguhaseo says:

                Of course these criticisms aren’t anything new, and when you think about it, the fact that these criticisms have been here for the longest time and yet very little has changed is an even more alarming indication of how resistant Filipinos are to changing for the better. Criticism is important because it allows well-adjusted people to reflect on their actions and mistakes. The fact that many Filipinos, and I do mean MANY, can’t take criticism is an important matter to point out, especially in a discussion that involves the suggestion of Filipino philosophers making any significant contribution to the world.

                Can you honestly say that we as a people are matured enough for that role? I say no, we are not.

                When was the last time you heard or read a prominent Filipino say, “Oh I see, yes you’re right!”?

                It’s always ,”No! You’re wrong, I’m right and blablabla!”

                Quite frankly, it’s embarrassing.

                I also can’t agree that we are beating a dead horse here since the majority of Filipinos are not even aware of these criticisms being lobbed at them, especially since there are many who don’t have or have limited access to the internet. It’s not like the media is about to air such views on TV programs either. Unless the whole country becomes aware that their faults are being laid out for the world to see, I don’t think that it is pointless to criticize.

                Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve spent enough time arguing with people in the internet to know that constant negativity is incredibly depressing. Looking at the brighter side of life is definitely necessary, hence why I pointed out that we’re heading in the right direction. I’m just being realistic here.

                If we can vote someone like Nancy Binay into office, who is to say we won’t vote her father into the presidency? The thought fills me with dread, but I won’t shy away from that very real possibility either.

            • josephivo says:

              Build on strengths, just tweet your weaknesses a little so they don’t hurt anymore. For the rest weaknesses are irrelevant, invest the bulk of your energy in strengths, whatever the context.

  16. hackguhaseo says:

    On the matter of the world and our dwindling resources, I remember reading a paper published in a scientific journal some time ago that it’s too late to do anything.

    Article link talking about the paper –

    Link to Nature magazine about the paper-

    • karl garcia says:

      Regarding your question on why it turned from philosophy to economics, I think the word”resources” was the keyword.Or the reply was meant for all readers.

  17. I’m a bit perplexed and disappointed at the commentary that followed this article. josephivo laid out a great vision statement, the next process is really simple we attempt to answer ‘How?’.

    “Excluded should be the Filipino lack of planning and preparedness, the Filipino mendicancy, the Filipino face-democracy, the ease with which inequality is neglected, the ability to be anchored in the past, the Filipino macho debate culture . . .”

    The request was simple at the end of the article–I myself am guilty of this in past threads.

    The first comment focused on 500,000 CE to some arcane quote in the Bible. Then you got people hung up on the definition of “new” and “old”, of “thinkers” and “philosophers”. And then jameboy, not a missing a beat, ‘we already have new thinkers’ in the Philippines and again not missing a beat, we don’t want to share (missing the whole point of the article)–the provincial mind at its best, forever contracting never expanding.

    When I first went to Indonesia, before Philippines, I met two guys named Rizal. Then I read up on Jose Rizal, mostly on wikipedia and got familiar with his works before going to the Philippines. Back stateside, I was watching a documentary on Cuba, and noticed in the classroom was ‘El Filibusterisimo’ (I’ve never read the novel, but have wiki’ed it)–if that novel was there, there’s a good chance ‘Noli mi Tangere’ would be too. Then I went to Malaysia and met another dude named Rizal, this time I had to ask, turns out his dad a professor of history in some college in Malaysia was a big fan of Jose Rizal.

    When speaking of thinkers, you don’t have to speak in terms of nationalities or regions, thinkers produce ideas, and if they are good, they will diffuse.

    Now jospehivo‘s vision is for the Philippines, being a product of both the East and West, situated right smack arguably where things are guaranteed to be interesting soon, is calling for new ideas to be generated from that very epicenter. It’s happened before but you guys basically just had one guy, his ideas kicked off a chain of events that would empower South and SE Asians to question European authority. So if it happened before, there’s no reason why it can’t happen again.

    So back to the ‘How?’…

    1. Let’s identify these new thinkers in the Philippines. For me, there’s Atty. Oposa. Who else can we name, that embody josephivo‘s vision?

    2. Jose Rizal was pretty much a one man army (his buddies the Ilustrados, but we know from the Greeks, the renaissance, enlightenment, the American war of independence, that when you get these great thinkers together more things get done. One idea to get this vision operational is to get these Filipino thinkers (divergent, global thinkers) together in think tanks, or just get a cafe or restaurant going and have them interact.

    3. Once we harvest these ideas, wrap ’em up, package these into pay-loads and send out for delivery. So along with these idea folks, we’ll need salesmen. Identify the best ad companies there, the most charismatic individuals, the best story tellers on print, art & media, visionary politicians that will deliver said payload.

    4. The Philippines can be the next epicenter of ideas. Start thinking of this as national resource, mine it like diamonds or create diamonds in a lab setting, ie. via schools, but not the old schools rather the new education paradigms emanating from Silicon Valley–I’m sure karl will appreciate this story, when the iPads were new and Steve Jobs was marketing them, a reporter commented on how Jobs kids must really love these new products, and Jobs said, “I don’t let my kids play with these things”.

    Mastery of any sort, whether ideas or in material, requires creation. You can’t create if you’re too busy consuming, so the next step to identifying current resources available, is how to multiply it in schools, but schools, a remnant of the industrial age, is now being replaced (not yet sure with what exactly).

    5. So the next step is to examine and evaluate these new schools (new ideas of education), what exactly they are and are there ones being formed in the Philippines now.

    (folks, let’s focus on the ‘How?’ and not get hung up on pettiness of thought.)

    • jameboy says:

      What can I say? Every time you speak about me you remind me of the sorry encounter we had in the previous past. There’s no benefit of the doubt, you just jump in every time you see ‘jameboy’ on the board and have your way in the discussion. It’s always me against you and the others.

      My post was very clear for you to misinterpret it. But like I said, what can I say that will not rile you up? 😎

    • Joe America says:

      I think one person’s pettiness is another’s grand insight, as we all come from different paths, some through the farmland, some the forest, some the university. Now there are two ways to look at Joseph’s appeal for new thinkers. One, it is a call for us to organize some new thinkers, because it can’t be us, we aren’t smart enough. Or two, try thinking for ourselves as to a new dynamic for the Philippines. And “status quo” is also a realistic option when you figure that the Philippines is not the land of flexibility and innovation and why bust our asses over an impossible assignment. Best to go swimming.

    • josephivo says:

      🙂 Just one comment. The “big” thinkers is one side, the “analyst” of the current situation is the other.

      The Filipino culture has this amazing ability to produce smiles. And with 2000 peso a month wages, these smiles cannot have been produced by consuming an even bigger soft drink or wearing a Cartier watch. Go to a European city and the first thing you notice is that everybody is in a hurry and no one is smiling, 180 degree the opposite of a provincial Filipino city. (Manila as a mega city lost all human proportions)

      And I’m dreaming that a new way of thinking would be less hypocritical. It should be based on realities, not only on dreams. (Edgar solve my circular thinking please….)

      • Joe America says:

        Gadzooks, circular indeed. On one hand, you want a coating of the soul, and on another, to deal with our realities. I’d say any philosophy that does not deal with the realities won’t coat any but a shallow soul. So we best re-jig our thinking to deal with the realities.

        • josephivo says:

          The Catholic Church talks for 2000 year about helping the poor. Go and watch the Vatican, the Bishop’s SUVs, the 1% people and Napoles on the first rows in the Church. The reality is that the Church does not do what it preaches. Action please.

          All politicians, without one exception, all talk about helping the poor. The reality is that most are only concerned with their own wallet. Poverty is rampant, inequality rising. Action please.

          We all care for each other, we all destroy the planet and the future of our children. Dreaming of bigger cars, bigger houses, bigger soda’s, bigger everything. Action please.

          Why is it that all people actions are so opposite of what they say, even of what they believe? Somewhere our logic is crooked. Somebody has to explain, Somebody has to come up with a better logic. Our crooked way of thinking was Ok until today. It will be disastrous in the changed world of tomorrow.

          The dream is not a dream of fine intellectuality, it is a dream of change. A search for the next and bigger Rizal. A call to mobilize.

    • karl garcia says:

      I appreciate the Steve Jobs narrative,LCx. 🙂

  18. jameboy says:

    So back to the ‘How?’…

    1. Let’s identify these new thinkers in the Philippines.
    But isn’t the right thing to do is to identify first the reason why is there a need for new thinkers? And I mean concrete and definite reason and not abstract or imagined assumption that its time for new thinkers to come in.

    Then the next issue would be the question of why the Philippines. Why single out for such mission a country that has been called a damaged culture, borrowed idea or the sick man of Asia? The irony of it all escapes me.

    2. One idea to get this vision operational is to get these Filipino thinkers (divergent, global thinkers) together in think tanks, or just get a cafe or restaurant going and have them interact.
    If I’m not mistaken we already have those. Been there done it. I remember the meetings/groupings of prominent people, politicians, business people, intellectuals, academicians, etc. in those social gatherings, talk shows, Kapihan sa (kung ano-ano), etc. kinds of meeting to discuss the issues of the day.

    3. Once we harvest these ideas, wrap ’em up, package these into pay-loads and send out for delivery. So along with these idea folks, we’ll need salesmen. Identify the best ad companies there, the most charismatic individuals, the best story tellers on print, art & media, visionary politicians that will deliver said payload.
    Ehem, Jojo Binay’s strategy looks far more better than what’s suggested above. Sometimes the packaging and selling of an idea gets in the way of absorbing its essence because it tends to get distorted by the bias and prejudice of one who packaged and sell it. Binay saw the idea, sister-city system, and just implemented it through swift action sans packaging and he got the outcome he wanted. Simple.

    4. The Philippines can be the next epicenter of ideas. Start thinking of this as national resource, mine it like diamonds or create diamonds in a lab setting…..

    5. So the next step is to examine and evaluate these new schools (new ideas of education), what exactly they are and are there ones being formed in the Philippines now.
    That’s putting the cart before the horse. Why ask the “what” about the ‘new schools of ideas’ instead of determining first the issues that requires a particular school of thought? What one should do is find out first what subjects (issues or events) need new thinking or approach and then pinpoint the ‘school/s’ that addresses the concerns of those subjects.

    Sometimes those we call ‘pettiness of thought’ is not really petty if you think about it. Nothing is petty when the issue is about ‘new thinking’. Well, if you discriminate, there wouldn’t really be lack of source to pinpoint pettiness. But that’s no longer about new thinking. That would already be off topic.

    Then we stop talking. 💂

    • Joe America says:

      Nicely said, Jameboy. I have the same problem with josephivo’s bouncing between reality and what is good for the soul. There are the realities we live and can forecast, and the realities of doing something about it. You have to do the first before the second, and any philosophy that is for the intelligentsia only, and not willing to listen to the realities of the common man, is going into the realm of lala land philosophy. Intellectual masturbation. Not real sex.

      • jameboy says:

        To josephivo’s credit, his idea, though a bit advance for its time, is really one that nation and people with influence has to ponder eventually. The fast-changing phase of life in terms of technological advances and the seemingly dragging motion of spiritual practices and cultural differences to march along in unison in one direction will in time require interpretation or enlightenment from new thinking. It may not be in this lifetime but maybe in not so distant future.

        With humans only using 10% of their brains we cannot discount the possibility of new thinkers/thinking cropping up when the time comes that we learn to tap the other 90% of it.

        On Intellectual masturbation, Joe, I have to confess I’m guilty. Guilty not because of the absence of real sex but in spite of it. 😄

    • “Most people imagine that philosophy consists in delivering discourses from the heights of a chair, and in giving classes based on texts. But what these people utterly miss is the uninterrupted philosophy which we see being practiced every day in a way which is perfectly equal to itself… Socrates did not set up grandstands for his audience and did not sit upon a professorial chair; he had no fixed timetable for talking or walking with his friends. Rather, he did philosophy sometimes by joking with them, or by drinking or going to war or to the market with them, and finally by going to prison and drinking poison. He was the first to show that at all times and in every place, in everything that happens to us, daily life gives us the opportunity to do philosophy.” – Plutarch

      jameboy, Joe, josephivo, et al. I think you guys are making far too wide a differentiation between realities and ideas here. And my use of the word petty isn’t to say your idea sucks and mine is better because I’m in the US, thus smarter, my use of petty here is in comparison to the article. josephivo presents a grand vision, and the response should be to match it in scope.

      I agree with the notion that there is nothing new under the sun, the Greeks have figured it out, if not them then the Indians or the Chinese. But for a lack of a better term, new here just means different & better. So here’s my rebuttal…

      1. Are you saying as we speak there are no Filipino new thinkers (those with different & better ideas) in the Philippines that embody josephivo’s article? Identify those new thinkers, ie. Atty. Oposa (hopefully, many more), and collect their reasons for thinking bigger, better & brighter ideas and we’d have our answers to your questions. I’m using your strategy here of everything being locally generated.

      But isn’t the right thing to do is to identify first the reason why is there a need for new thinkers?

      That’s exactly what provincial, petty thinking is. As that is the ass-backwards way of doing things. Did Columbus, the Wright Bros. and developers of ARPANET need concrete & definite reasons? Sometimes exploration, adventure & connection are reasons enough, and from it comes greatness. If you were these folks’ trusted advisor, and they listened to you, nothing would get done, because you signify a contracting (not expanding) force.

      So there’s a need for new thinkers, simply because thinking different and better is what an expanding culture does, ie. the Greeks, the Indians (under Ashoka, Buddhism spread, was shared). Ashoka didn’t need a concrete & definite reason to share Buddhism, he did so because it represented something better and different–for the benefit of mankind.

      Why single out for such mission a country that has been called a damaged culture, borrowed idea or the sick man of Asia? The irony of it all escapes me.

      Again this is why your comments are petty, because josephivo already asked us to “exclude” these from the discussion to match his vision. The irony you’re relishing in isn’t important. The only thing important to consider is if what josephivo is envisioning is viable, and I think that it is precisely because of the Philippines’ East/West make-up, and their ability to leverage Western powers (intellectual, economic & cultural)

      All the tangental, irrelevant questions you’ve asked for 1). is unnecessary as explained above, just list these new thinkers you’ve already described here: “We have enough free thinkers in the country that I rather see succeed in guiding us to a better, brighter and richer future”.

      2. meetings/groupings of prominent people, politicians, business people, intellectuals, academicians, etc. in those social gatherings, talk shows, Kapihan sa (kung ano-ano), etc. kinds of meeting to discuss the issues of the day.

      I’m not talking merely about getting together, jameboy, I’m talking about results, ideas generated from these meeting of minds, hence operational. RAND/CNAS were think tanks sonny, karl & I mentioned back in the ACLU article thread. karl’s father worked for a couple of think tanks in the Philippines but none at the level we see here–so you don’t already have those.

      3. Binay saw the idea, sister-city system, and just implemented it through swift action sans packaging and he got the outcome he wanted.

      What was the outcome?

      Sometimes the packaging and selling of an idea gets in the way of absorbing its essence because it tends to get distorted by the bias and prejudice of one who packaged and sell it.

      Ideally, the salesman, pitchman, works at the pleasure of the person(s) responsible for the idea. Many times like Steve Jobs, the idea guy and the pitch guy is one and the same, all new thinkers should strive for this.

      5. Why ask the “what” about the ‘new schools of ideas’ instead of determining first the issues that requires a particular school of thought?

      This is another irrelevant question, similar to your questions in 1). re concrete & definite reasons. The search for knowledge is constant, never ending. We seek knowledge for knowledge’s sake and not some issues that need defining. If better and brighter thinkers and ideas emerge, we entertain their ideas, not for any sort of reason but for the sake of these ideas.

      Similarly, if new schools emerge, ie. project-based, elimination of age as sole factor in grouping students, team teaching, less than 10 student classrooms, less classroom time, etc. etc. Test them for efficacy sure vis-a-vis actual learning, but matching irrelevant issues to the process of learning is asinine.

      What one should do is find out first what subjects (issues or events) need new thinking or approach and then pinpoint the ‘school/s’ that addresses the concerns of those subjects.

      Again you’re missing the forest for the trees, stuck on irrelevant details. You’re on focus mode instead of diffuse mode. These new schools begin with big concepts then specialize, whereas current trends focus on over-specialization, ie. just accounting, or just nursing, or just IT, and that’s exactly what’s wrong with Philippine education now, as already mentioned in past threads. And you wanna do more “pinpointing”? Let’s move on.

      Sometimes those we call ‘pettiness of thought’ is not really petty if you think about it.

      Compared to josephivo’s vision for the Philippines, all that you’ve stated is still petty–very much so. Because you are not matching his ideas, edgar’s commentary below is on par.

      “We have enough free thinkers in the country that I rather see succeed in guiding us to a better, brighter and richer future” If you can list these free thinkers, then you’re golden.

      • Joe America says:

        You suggest your comment was not made to be judgmental on the point of petty, but it is, as is this comment. Everyone contributes to the best of his or her experience, knowledge or ability, not yours. If you have better ideas, I think it would be better to express them rather than suggest some, or all, are not living up to standards you deem to be higher.

        One of the values I would think we should aspire to, in dialogue, is to respect that other people come from where they come from. If it is poverty and weak education, that is where they come from. If it is from the realm of engineering rather than poetry, that is where they come from. All have thoughts that are worth listening to and not denigrated because you came from somewhere else.

        • Joe,

          My point re jameboy is he can match it. I know he’s not coming from a weak education, I know he’s smart, as evidenced by his slipperiness. But instead of matching josephivo’s article, which is right up his alley, ie. the greatest of Philippines, he’s falling back on habit, when this should be his thread–he should be enumerating these great individuals and their locally generated ideas, and adding more local ideas, instead nothing. Doesn’t that frustrate you? This is basically a nationalist’s article!

          • Joe America says:

            Nationalists are worth listening to. No, his commentary often intrigues or confuses me. The only time it frustrated me was when I was engaged in debate with him, like yours. I got over it. Your comment does frustrate me. Just deal with YOUR contribution to josephivo’s interesting topic, and not Jameboy’s.

            • re edgar’s question below, “Can you name a world-class Filipino philosopher? How about a world-class Filipino scientist?” this is jameboy‘s purview. I can contribute Western thinkers, then and now, but this is his expertise (Philippine talent) and central to josephivo’s article, if we’re to push this vision forward. This is jameboy’s strong suit, his ace up the sleeve. Maybe he’s just saving it.

              • Joe America says:

                One more and you are outta here.

              • One more? I’m simply explaining the limits of my contributions compared to jameboy’s deeper expertise when it comes to Philippine talent, so if he is free to incite difference in opinion why am I not as free to incite a fellow reader’s strength? Are they both not inherently the same, Joe? I doubt he’s gonna post a rebuttal now, but that was the spirit of that post, to challenge jameboy to dig deep into his strengths, instead of resorting to “stinginess” as he tends to do.

              • Joe America says:

                You are suspended for 30 days.

              • Pity, he has contributed a lot here and his long exchanges with edgar re micha’s humanism is a model in civil disagreement and fruitful discussions. I learned a lot from their debate. Anyways, 30 days will soon come to pass.

              • I remembered and appreciated his take on another of micha’s radical idea of legalizing even hard drugs, boy, that was a long and informative thread.

        • edgar lores says:

          This reminds me of a beautiful new word I learned the other day — “sonder”.

          Its a noun that means “the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own — populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness — an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.”

          From “The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows”

  19. Chris J says:

    Very thoughtful. My wife and I recently came here to the Philippines to retire, part of that population shift you refer to as Americans who realized that in order to survive and perhaps thrive in our senior retirement years, it was not something we could do with great ease on the west coast in California. While both my wife and I have been regularly employed in the States for most of our lives, we have found that living in the States as retirees would be potentially fatal to our existing finances, and that we would NEVER really be able to afford to stop working, albeit part time or otherwise to supplement both our savings and social security benefits.

    On another, sadder note, I feel in large part that our country has passed some rubicon existentially where, as you say, the current currency of value is simply that–money. Existentially, somehow, the values ascribed to opportunity and the requisite work ethic as a value has bee supplanted by the benefit. It’s about money more than quality of life. I simply don’t have the words in my lexicon at this moment to explain.

  20. edgar lores says:

    Let me try to put in perspective (mine, of course) this excellent essay and the confused reactions I am seeing.

    1. First of all, the essay is a grand call to arrive at new ideas and new solutions. There is no doubt these are needed not only in our country but worldwide.

    2. My initial reaction was a warning of caution from three viewpoints:

    2.1. One, let us not be seduced by the romance of novel ideas and solutions that are “waiting” just around the corner. Remember in the Eureka! essay (“Eureka! I Have Found It! Why the Philippines Is This Way!”), JoeAm observed our propensity to aspire but not to do. As I said, there is danger in the attitude of waiting.

    2.2. Two, as I have enumerated, there are existing ideas and solutions that can go a long way to solving our current problems. At the individual level, there are many to choose from. At the level of society, we have adopted some of these foreign solutions, such as our political institutions.

    2.3. Three, the problem at the center of our social adoption is that we have mangled the implementation of the solutions. Therefore, before looking for new solutions, let us first attempt to bring these solutions to a greater state of perfection, closer to the ideal.

    2.3.1. Our judiciary is a case in point. We have the best of two worlds, codified law and common law, but our judicial system is the pits.

    2.3.2. Elsewhere in this thread, JoeAm has made the point that some of us are “Obsessing over process rather than vision and progress.” This is true perhaps in the case of the nation twisting itself into pretzels over Grace Poe’s citizenship, but it is not true in the matter of institutions. As a retired computer analyst, I cannot underscore how important process is, how important each process step, each code of computer instruction is to achieve the vision.

    3. Josephivo is to be commended for his wide-ranging vision – past, present and future.

    3.1. The vision is applicable to the world at large. However, I am not optimistic about the vision of Filipino thinkers arising to meet the call of necessity. Why? Simply because a seed cannot grow on fallow soil.

    3.2. There is a reason why the flowering of genius occurs at a certain time, a certain place, and certain circumstances. That reason is tradition.

    3.2.1. The flowering of philosophers in western continental Europe (including Great Britain) is because of the vast tradition stretching from early medieval times, from Scholasticism to Structuralism.

    3.2.2. The flowering of spiritual gurus in India is because of tradition and the nation’s accumulated knowledge of the psyche and spirit. It is the birthplace of four of the world’s major religions.

    3.2.3. The flowering of technical innovation in the U.S. is because of the tradition of the American Industrial Revolution; such institutions as MIT, NASA and DARPA; and such places as Route 128 and Silicon Valley.

    3.2.4. Let me not mention the business acumen of the Chinese.

    4. Sadly, the Philippines does not have a tradition – and the energy — of intellectualism. Neither in philosophy, in science or in the humanities. We have hardly any original thinkers. We are a nation of copycats… and not even good ones at that.

    4.1. We are happy fools. Should we change?

    5. Here’s a test: Can you name a world-class Filipino philosopher? How about a world-class Filipino scientist? I can’t, although there’s that engineer from Cagayan.

    5.2. Here’s another test: Name as quickly as you can, in 10 seconds, outstanding Filipino traditions (or attributes), positive and negative.

    5.2.1. What did you come up with?

    5.2.2. Here is what I came up with: family, fiesta, dependence (or neediness), corruption.

    6. If Josephivo’s call is to start a tradition of Filipino intellectualism, I am with him all the way. This blog, and others like it, are seedling gardens. They are the rich beds of soil from which seeds can be germinated and transplanted for plants to grow and flourish nationwide.

    7. It is grand to dream; grander to accomplish.

    • karl garcia says:

      I already showed you the clapping hands emoticon,thanks again Edgar!

      • karl garcia says:

        i flunked the pop quiz, because it took me more than 10 seconds. Rizal for philosopher.Edgar Lores was cited as the smartest man in this blog by Irineo Salazar,and I agree,I read a couple of names he mentioned for scientistsgot to go back to his blog to remember them.
        Vote buying,fiestas too,bahala na si batman fatalism, religiosity,smiling machine.

    • Joe America says:

      2.3.2 Let me clarify about processes. I agree that they are essential to achieving vision. But if they are processes that are undertaken for the sake of processes, and not in the pursuit of vision, they can work against that vision. Kicking Grace Poe out on a technicality whilst not having any technicalities or even laws or ethical standards to kick Jejomar Binay out is beyond weird. The processes have been built to favor the favored, and our new thinking ought to toss that batch into the scrap heap and develop some new ones.

    • 3.1. The vision is applicable to the world at large. However, I am not optimistic about the vision of Filipino thinkers arising to meet the call of necessity. Why? Simply because a seed cannot grow on fallow soil.

      But I think these new thinkers needn’t be from Philippines, they can be Filipino or non-Filipino, what’s needed is just for them to converge in the Philippines.

      5. Here’s a test: Can you name a world-class Filipino philosopher? How about a world-class Filipino scientist? I can’t, although there’s that engineer from Cagayan.

      This is actually where I want jameboy to focus his energy. He loves stating that everything’s already in the Philippines, when it’s time to shine, meaning actually enumerate the very people he’s been bragging about, as Philippine based, and nothing.

      • Joe America says:

        I’d suggest you get the chip off your shoulder regarding Jameboy. We’ve all gone our rounds with him and found areas of lengthy and involved disagreement. Then we move on to find areas of agreement, insight and peace. This everlasting debate mixes issue and personality – that occurs both within his comments and yours – and it is becoming overbearing. You are not his personality morality specialist, nor is he yours.

        • Joe America says:

          I would add that this blog stands out because people who comment here are adept at not falling into the common trap of engaging on personality rather than issues. You have the intellect and I suspect the discipline to rise to that standard and I heartily suggest you do so.

          • “We have enough free thinkers in the country that I rather see succeed in guiding us to a better, brighter and richer future” I’m just perplexed as to jameboy‘s standard banner on every thread, then here where we really need an accounting of these thinkers in the Philippines, and nothing. But you are right, Joe.

            • Joe America says:

              You have the choice of not reading his stuff, or not visiting the blog. You will never remake him. I will not ban him, as I won’t ban MRP, even though some would find that to their satisfaction. Jameboy’s provocations are good for the stretching of intellect and for exercise of emotional discipline. I don’t really want like-minded yaysayers or a blog devoid of character and challenge.

        • jameboy says:

          Opps, you beat me by the nose there Joe! I agree, let there be peace. I’m zipped. 😶

      • jameboy says:

        Lol! It’s me again? How come my name always get to be inserted by you on something I don’t have anything to do with?

        You’re having a conversation with another person about another person’s idea, why drag ‘jamboy’ in it? If you cannot answer the question say so and if you want me to respond to it let the other person address it to me.

        In the meantime, let me watch you masturbate (intellectually) with the other party on the issue. 😎

        • This is your raison d’être, jameboy. The focal point of all your commentaries in the past re local talents. Why the sudden silence?

          • Joe America says:

            I have no trouble suspending anybody who cannot understand the tenor of the dialogue that I seek for this blog, and insists on making it a place for personal issues. My prior comments were suggestions, and you have not listened. This is a flat out statement. Stick to the issue. Jameboy is not it.

        • Joe America says:

          You do provoke, too. Let it go. When you say you are going to move on, do so. You both have a lot to contribute to the blog insights, but this kind of dialogue is not it.

    • josephivo says:

      Please teach me how to structure a thought in a logical way so it becomes almost trivial. I tried copying your numbering but the chaos in my mind rejects the method. But to the point.

      100 million people, 10 decent universities, let us not exclude the possibility of an outlier, even without a fertile breeding ground.

      People coming to mind? Positive: Tagle as a papal candidate, a bright person educated with care in a correct environment, although not mine. The sari-sari owner in Sibulan, Oriental Negros, a wise woman with wit, survival skills, simple common sense. Negative: Vice major Moreno, selfish, actor, calling the Almighty “Kuya” and Napoles’ daughter, selfish, actor, calling the Almighty “Ate”.

      I only see the shadows of Filipino ingenuity: their reliance on shared knowledge, not individual knowledge; living the serenity prayer by knowing what they cannot change and accept it, working as hell for the minor things they can change. Easy comes, easy goes. But I might be too romantic. Someone embedded with the correct toolkit to analyze and the correct vocabulary to formulate might come up with a valuable “Filipino philosophy”.

    • Joe America says:

      Regarding number 5, I’ve waited for a response, but seeing none, I would note that they is but one, Alfredo Pimentel Co. Refer to: Dr. Co is a thinker and teacher. That he exists but is powerless to change our values makes me believe the new thinker has to be of practical orientation with pseudo-philosophical inclinations. Like, a leader.

  21. Joe America says:

    It would seem that we have identified no effective means of bringing new thought to the world via the Philippines. The one noted philosopher in the Philippines is a teacher. I return to my own inclination to see new values shaping around survival and non-national frontiers. The frontiers may be smaller (family/clan) or larger (ASEAN and defensive alliances) or both. They will also see a shift in consumption from vanity (whitening creams) to necessities (stocking up for storms; guns; first aid kits’ training in shooting and martial arts). This will take perhaps 25 years to notice, although I’ll be taking my wife down to the shooting range next week.

    A leader may decide that social engineering is critical in the Philippines to get rid of the dysfunctional mind-sets of winning over problem-solving, self over community, and envy over ambition. If the trend is not led aggressively, there will be a natural migration toward healthier values. Problem-solving and rational thinking, fair competition on the basis of skills and productivity, and giving of oneself for groups or loyalty chain allegiances (don’t buy Chinese products). Those are not new to the west, but are new to the Philippines, and important for the Philippines to fit properly into the loyalty chains with the west and Asian partners.

    This is only the kernel of an idea right now. I need to add some depth to the idea and perhaps will make a blog out of it.

    • sonny says:

      Joe, this reminds me of Kissinger’s view of the Cold War: America was Athens to Russia’s Sparta; ancient Greece is like the Philippines (humor me). Two archipelagos consisting of city-size regional centers and diversity. And now we seek philosophers and thinkers. Continuing the metaphor, the Greek language is like English to the Filipinos (our Malay languages are strongly affective and rarely abstract). Filipinos are poised to find their place in the world of intellectual thought if and when we’re ready to admit this and follow through. This is part of my Reflections 101. 🙂

      • Joe America says:

        “affective” adj relating to moods, feelings, and attitudes

        And socialized personality and language are compatible. Thus, little notice of forest and lots of screaming or weeping or complaining about trees. Very good, sonny. Thanks.

      • josephivo says:

        The very old philosophy was based on authority, the old – current – one on rationality, the new one might need more affective elements.

      • Micha says:


        Interesting that you mentioned Greece. A country famous for its thinkers and philosophers is experiencing modern day drama and tragedy.

        It’s current leaders are locked in a battle of wills with its German led creditors and is contemplating whether to d or not to d.

        • Joe America says:

          Is that what is called “irony”?

          • Micha says:

            Gratuitous suffering.

            Most of it could have been avoided if it did not gave up its own currency, the drachma, in favor of the euro.

            A Grexit looks more and more tempting.

            • Joe America says:

              It’s a battle to see who causes me to snort the most coffee, you or Edgar.

            • They contracted their enormous debts in euro, so they could not be monetary sovereign. They initially wallowed in false or imagined prosperity, borrowed left and right and not taxed their citizens enough… the result – their present drama and tragedy. To default, or not to default – in the meantime people are rebelling against the economic prescriptions as mandated by the the Euro nations.

              • Micha says:

                Succinct. Accurate. Right between the eyes.

                Thank you. 🙂

              • sonny says:

                I think Mary Grace should set up a Financial Advisor shingle just for Society members. I hope her rates are affordable. 🙂

              • @ Sonny

                …ahahaha… I think it’s more of Micha’s forte….I read and share, and that’s about it…no economics background or experience… Financial accounting, maybe

              • Thanks, too Micha…. I wonder what you think of this dilemma.

                Parekoy (from Raissa’s blog) is very vocal about his displeasure about Cory’s decision to honor Marco’s debts, portions of which we know had found their way to Swiss bank accounts for himself and his cronies. Her final decision was a bitter pill that we had to take in order for us to retain a semblance of credibility in the eyes of the world in general and in its financial sector in particular. With her son’s regime, we have redeemed ourselves and from what I’ve heard, we are now a net lender or something.

                To default or not to default. His point is that Cory should have taken advantage of the revolutionary nature of her government and requested a substantial reduction of the total amount if not outright default. That way, we could have recovered much faster than we did.

              • To avoid the recurrence of the Marcos era of plunging our nation into deep foreign debt and thereby surrendering our sovereignty to IMF and World Bank by way of economic prescriptions, we should finance our development projects via Treasury Bills and other government securities issuance.

                I miss the SDA (special deposit accounts) investment offered before by my bank, I invested in a conservative way in government securities (mindful of ultra high interest yields that eventually lead to loss of both principal and interest).

                I had that deep satisfaction in knowing that my government owes me a little something so it can finance the development and economic growth. It all stopped as the government is now awash with cash – no liquidity problem there.

              • Sup says:

                Mary, Joe did tell me to take a look here…so i did..

                To make your reply more complete:
                The retirement age in Greece is 61 while the most productive countries is Europa did go to 67 from 65 before (Germany, Netherlands etc.) You can compare Greece with the Philippines, laid back, Filipino time, living in the night outside , even the 3/4 year old kids are awake at 11 pm, always barbeque…long siesta under the tree at lunchtime..
                Lool at the Forbes global 2000 index..the first Greece owned company is at number 1089..
                Only 10 in the whole index…
                4 banks, 3 gasoline sellers…
                Nothing worldwide like the Netherlands Heineken, Shell etc..


                Do i say they should never have been invited to the Euro?
                To Joe, i don’t spend much typing here, even in Raissa mostly short story because i type one finger only…it hurts already for today 🙂

              • Joe America says:

                Sorry to put you through so much pain, Sup. 🙂 But your finger does quite well, as far as insight goes. And for the benefit of our other readers who may not have caught our exchange at Riassa’s site, I’m happy to inform them that you were designated an official Society of Honor “New Filipino Thinker”, for those insights.

                Visit when the inclination strikes, type when the digit is willing.

              • sonny says:

                Mary Grace, I find satisfaction that we share the same opinion about the leverage of Cory right after Marcos’ demise as dictator. She could have leveraged for a restructuring of the 56 billion dollar debt of that time. What did we know at the time. By that time, Marcos had already reconfigured our government, i.e. key people, to move by Presidential Decrees.

              • Same here, sonny… really glad that we now share the same opinion. I remember your own eureka moment which you shared with us. Thanks.

          • sonny says:

            Art imitating life or life imitating art, maybe also?

        • sonny says:

          Mischa, this is also why I follow the ways of the ancient Greeks, from their lofty philosophy to their literary genius. If there was the Renaissance man from the medievals, then the Greeks gave us “Every-State” and their version of “Everyman.” (Today’s Europe is one huge black box to me, a “terra incognita” 😦 )

  22. Congrats, sup for getting the distinction of being the official Society of Honor “New Filipino Thinker”….

    • Sup says:

      Mary Grace/ Joe….

      After all this praise today my ego is now bigger than Parekoy…whahahahahhahahaaahahaha

      • @ Sup

        I’m serious. Your post today in Raissa’s blog echoes what is in my mind all along. Parekoy, caliphman and balayang are ganging up on Joe and for what? To prove that they are ultra nationalist, and those of us who sympathize with him are colonialist and American ass kissers? They are barely civil when addressing Joe, their language are cutting if not foul, one time Joe was provoked enough to write f…k off and one was so offended as if Parekoy’s language are angelic and that there are 2 separate ethics for them and another for Joe.

        • Sup says:

          Thanks for the kind words Mary Grace….
          It got worse after Jeffrey…..Joe may not defend/share his thought as US citizen while they are the defenders in behave of ”all” Filipino’s…measuring with 2 sticks ill call that..
          Jeffrey Laude…ok, my opinion? If Jeffrey was really a ”Jennifer” and did not cheat a drunken sailor they would be happily outside the motel room after 20 minutes with Pemberton having 2 empty balls and Jennifer some cash for food…and they would both be happy…End of the story…If you play with fire you might get burned Jeffrey….I wonder what Parekoy would do when he was walking drunk in lets say Boston and did pay a girl to do the ”men” thing and found out that the girl had something extra between the legs?
          many times when it is a foreigner involved the Filipino’s suddenly become a team and gang the foreigner up( mostly the men are exposing this behavior.. it must have something to do with loving cock fights,their own cock is always the best …till it is the chicken sopas after the lost game)….This what i mean with ego thing…
          Please correct me if i am wrong…

          • Pemberton is now being given the due process, his day in court, as it should be. If proven guilty, I hope being cheated that way while drunk can be treated as mitigating circumstances. He has the best legal assistance (I hope) which will be a big factor to prove his is innocent, it he is.

            Atty. Roque is using that unfortunate incident to promote his ultra nationalist thingy to muddle the issues and some people are joining in the fray. With this China’s bullying tactics hugging even international news, I am quite aghast.

          • Joe America says:

            Parekoy is incensed that I do not apologize for using the term “rape” of Pemberton (later retracted as a poor way of expressing that I thought Pemberton might have been emotionally deranged). I cannot for the world understand why I should apologize to Parekoy. To apologize would be to take care of Parekoy’s poor offended emotions.

            What, Parekoy can’t take care of his own needs? He requires that JoeAm care for him? Ease his aches? He is that needy?

            Give me a break.

        • Joe America says:

          The ultra-nationalists do believe there are two separate ethics, one for uppity foreigners and one for themselves and those who agree with them. Those who argue for decency are put into the bucket of ass-kissers, so I guess there are three buckets in all. Real Filipinos (them), foreigners (me) and ass-kissers (reasonable people seeking mature discussion). In the Philippines, my legal status is indeed one of visitor, but a permanent one. So there are different rules for me than for citizens. They are reasonable. And I got confirmation that I am a member of the CPM community, like anybody else who contributes there, and that rather sealed off their line of argument that I must abide by different rules there. And when they pretend they are speaking for the whole of the CPM community (as Parekoy is wont to do), they are lying, for they surely don’t speak for me.

          I also got good advice from behind the scenes. “Just ignore them, Joe, you are well respected in the CPM community. Don’t go down to their standards.”

          So that’s what I try to do now. But I do find them irksome when they come across as moralists of personality. They can’t even run their own lives decently, and they want to tell me how deficient mine is?

          “Give me a break!” (Or “F off”, as the case may be.) 🙂

      • Joe America says:

        🙂 that’s HUGE. Stay away from pins and nails and other sharp-toed fellows . . .

  23. Micha says:

    @Mary Grace

    I too was left wondering why Cory didn’t took advantage of her political capital after the EDSA euphoria when almost everyone, including our creditors, were willing to give the Philippines a chance for a fresh start and allow us to, at least, partially default. My guess is that Cory has friends, or maybe friends of her friends, who were not exactly excited at the prospect of getting a haircut.

    • We missed a lot of opportunities in not taking advantage of the revolutionary government status. I suppose she opted to being the duly elected president in that snap election and concentrated on restoring democracy. Not revolutionary in style and execution.

  24. Off topic again, but I can’t help but think (not a great thinker but then….) I am bothered by a news item which said that Russia is joining in the military exercise in the West Philippine Seas. I know Russia and China are allies, so what can we deduce from that situation?

    Then I came across this article and I wonder, is this article accurate / updated? From this, the US has a total of 290 units in naval strength and Russia and China have a combined strength of 1,196. US air crafts numbers 15,293 while the combined Russia and China has 9,546. If it is conventional warfare, US and its allies are ahead, but how about in the sea? The USS Ronald Reagan is the best nuclear-powered super carrier, but would it be sufficient as a deterrent factor?

    We try to be diplomatic and calmly talk with our neighboring Asian countries. We have elevated our case to the proper UN body but if its decision favors us and China ignores it, as it is doing now by way of their reclamation activities there, what happens then? We need to pray, and pray hard.

  25. josephivo says:

    A Filipino philosopher… I like the 2 last paragraphs.

    • Joe America says:

      It is interesting reading. The last two paragraphs suggest the World Bank is evil, the churches good, and we must set aside material wealth and . . . do what, exactly? Be kind to people? Grow our gardens in the back yard? I agree materialism is excessive, and the article comes close to the new thinking you suggest. But I’m not sure how to get from Materialism to return to Eden without going through Chaos.

  26. David Murphy says:

    Today’s about 3 weeks after this article was first published so there’s not much possibility that anyone will read this and that gives me confidence to put it out there. Throughout my reading of the article and the comments I was thinking that the great ideas that the Philippines will contribute and that will be adopted globally will probably not come from scientists or intellectuals or any of the sources that the writers seemed to consider possible. My expectation is that the ideas will come from simple people who develop simple means of dealing with common problems that they encounter on a daily basis. I’m thinking about street vendors or sari-sari store owners, small or not so small businessmen, clerks, managers, low or mid-level executives, people from all walks of life who recognize a recurrent and wide-spread problem and develop a way to cope with it. The airline industry marked a beginning with two bicycle mechanics creating a flying machine, Steve Jobs created a revolution in home computing with his ideas, including the mouse, beginning in a garage workshop. A kid came up with a great idea, yet to be implemented ,on how to remove, efficiently and cheaply, the megatons of plastic that are fouling the ocean. Rather than haul nets through the water to remove the trash, his plan was to anchor the nets and let the ocean currents drive the water through the nets where the waste could be collected and hauled off to be recycled. Just a simple change of perspective that makes a huge difference. This is the kind of contributions I expect to come out of the Philippines and in aggregate make a difference in lives throughout the world. Maybe if you keep your eyes open, you will be the one to instigate a change.

    • Joe America says:

      Well, Jesus was a simple man and he awakened a new morality. It is still applied in half-baked fashion, but there is no doubt that startling changes can come from simple sources. And as others have stated, the individual is key to any new philosophy or way of thinking about our condition.

    • juan lee says:

      i agree…it follows kiss…keep it simple smart…and simpleness makes it a lot doable. and here is a bit idea in this digital age…the start of the bitonomics where anything and everything at anywhere has a bit equivalent…say a grain of salt has the equivalent of one bit. a small piece of tomato cost 10 bits. a gram of 24k gold equals 1kbits. when one wants to eat a small tomato, one has to transfer 10 bits to the potato owner’s account. from this concept gives birth to the bit keepers and bit counters, if one wants to borrow 100 bits from the bit keepers at 1 percent per month interest, the bit keeper transfers the 100 bits to the borrower’s bit account bank and when due date comes borrower transfer 101 bits to the lender bit keeper, services and products will be paid in bits. to be able to transact in bits, one has to have a bit bankbook (an atm like small debit-credit bit gadget) that is connected to a bit server/bank. the bit bank book has to be biometrically secured, the is the owners biometrics will authenticate the transaction. the technology is already there, how to make it happen is still a bit thought. i know a little bit but i predict many will become bit players too. and now you know a bit of new thinker story. gudde

Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] calling us idiots for thinking in . . . well, our normal provincial terms. His last article “The Philippines: new thinkers wanted” again challenged us to throw out the old values and constructs by which we live and look for […]

  2. […] attempted to combine the spirit of josephivo’s article (“The Philippines: New thinkers wanted”) calling for the New Philosophers from the Philippines, with the continued spirit of my […]

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