Pinakamahalaga Ang Politika Sa Buhay Ng Tao

[Photo source: asianjournal.com]

By Popoy Del R. Cartanio

Ano ba yan? Saan ba napulot yan ideya na yan. Kahit basura sa Payatas o sa Isla Puting Bato meron pakinabang. Pero politika? Hah! Galit ang mga karanniwan mamayan diyan. Ang politika, salot sa mga mahirap yan. Ugat ng katarantaduhan sa lipunan yan, Eh.

Teka, teka muna. Pag ganyan ang dating sa kaisipan ng bayan, malamang bumigay at sumunod na lang sa araw araw sa masamang bunga ng politika. Anong masamang bunga? Ano pa eh di yun dambuhala at malawakan pagnanakaw sa kaban ng bayan. Na maging maliitan o malakihan man ay maaring mauwi sa patayan at iba pang kasamaan.

Pero meron ibang pananaw. Hindi agad naghuhusga o humahatlol. Ang isipang sinikal hindi nagbubunga ng kasipagan at pagsisikap. To write it in English for the reading pleasure of home grown or Canadian-born Pinoys, this is what I have just written.

Sorry? Come again. Where did that come from? The idea that politics is the most valuable thing in the life of the people. Even garbage in Payatas or Isla Puting Bato have value to the people. Ordinary people are angry with politics. It is the scourge of the poor or the have nothings people. Because Politics is the root of badness in the society.

But wait that kind of thinking leads to acceptance and obedience to the daily fruits of bad politics that range from petty thievery to awesome plunder. WAIT, there’s another true view of politics that’s not conclusive or judgmental because cynical thinking isn’t diligent or productive.

While studying public administration, a professor told us: “There is no such thing as Bad Politics. Politics per se is good. It is partisan politics that is bad.” I remember the professor did not say it is the politician that makes it bad. Which encouraged me and my classmates to rake politicians over the coals of vitriolic criticisms. Graduating, I thought I should hold my horses and stop being cynical.

Pero, ipipilit ko pa rin: Pinakamahalaga Ang Politika Sa Buhay Ng Tao. Kung ang liwanag ng lente sa akademya ng Pilosopiya o Agham ang gagawing panuri.

Still, I will insist that politics is of the highest value to the lives of the people from the perspective of philosophy and science of politics as accepted in the academe. I will just borrow and expand the thoughts of two professors: David Easton and Harold Lasswell. I have cited these two guys may be more than a dozen times in as many occasions. Says Toronto-born American political scientists David Easton: “Politics is the authoritative allocation of values in the society.” To me value simply means what the society value most is also what the people value most. As simple as that. Do the people value most non-material things? Peace and order? Happiness? Honor? Integrity and Honesty? Beauty? traditional songs and music , enough Money? etc.? Or do the people value more THEIR OPPOSITES like the pricey and signature things, anarchy, sadness, notoriety, dishonesty, ugliness, Rap or Hip Hap, excessive money, etc.?

Value is a tricky word and could spew out inexact meanings. To me the word is positive, noble and sublime, never diminishes and uplifting. I still stuck to that belief even after we have studied Mary Racelis-Hollsteiner treatise on lowland Filipino values of “hiya,” “pakikisama,” “utang na loob, ” etc. which I think can have as well beneficial effects on, as it can as bad have devil-like insidious dominance on the practice of Philippines politics.

“Authoritative allocation of values” means authorized or so ordered by the people the distribution of values like wealth and good behaviour among themselves as led and managed by their elected officials. How ” hiya,” “pakikisama,” “utang na loob, ” etc. is meaningfully allocated and live on as politics in the society. The allowed perversion of these values by the authority will wrongfully portray politics as BAD news if not as a necessary evil people must accept and live with.

Moreover, an American political scientist the late Professor Harold Lasswell in his books and teachings may have offered simpler words for the common people to have an objective understanding of politics. He said “politics is who gets what, where, when and how.” He said “values as desired goals and power as the ability to participate in decisions .”

My understanding of the two, Easton and Lasswell is that values is the bone of contention, what it is, is the desired goals of the people; who means the people who get or benefit from it, where (place and location, either national or regional or provincial) and how means the legal or moral process of putting politics into action. Said in another way Easton simply stated this is what politics is all about while Lasswell went further to explain using simple words to describe its dynamic aspects; like politics in action.

Local or international usage of the words bad politics and good politics may have defined or distorted its true meanings but Filipinos whose diaspora is everywhere as immigrants or OFWs will have observed the difference between and among countries whether politics despite cynicism and criticisms remains attuned and in step with the peoples’ values. Is bad politics a pre-condtion for a bad economy. Ergo is bad politics the cause of emigration to other countries? Why do people leave? Why do people stay? Because of their values, eh?

I still think the title of this piece is “fitting and proper” if the people value most non-material things, Peace and order, Happiness, Integrity and Honesty, Beauty, traditional songs and music, and sufficient money.

Is this noteworthy — although religion is more about preparation for a life in the Great Beyond than life in the here and now, Religion is heavily IMPLICATED in the allocation of moral values in society. It is a long shot to say that a FAILED POLITICS can be traced to a FAILED RELIGION. I ask for conjectures: is the new phenomenon on migration having to do with failed religion and not the lack of it? Or too much of it bordering on idolatry?

Any statement on politics vis-a-vis religion in any country is a monumental invitation for debate and discourse. But that doesn’t prevent me from writing a simple deduction or spin off from experience. I dare say that more than in the Philippines or in the United States that in Canada politics and religion blend well as symbiotic partners. The duo ideology seems oblivious of the fallible dictum commanding separation of the church from the state; in the bible render into Caesar what is Caesar and unto God what is God’s.

 

Comments
71 Responses to “Pinakamahalaga Ang Politika Sa Buhay Ng Tao”
  1. karlgarcia says:

    In the study of public administration, there is no bad politics.
    In the study of public relations, there is no bad publicity.
    In the study of news, no news is good news.

    • popoy says:

      Karl in Canada, it’s summative Eh. In Batangas Ala Eh, tatlong linya lang;
      parang sammare ang dating eh. In Tondo Manila: P’re talong upak pantumba na P’re. Sa akin naman : Thanks Karl.

      • karlgarcia says:

        When I first heard that “no news is good news”, I thought it was negative and everything is bad news, but of course it meant that one should not worry if a loved one has not called or written yet, they might be busy.

  2. andrewlim8 says:

    Speaker Alvarez: If you’re not from Mindanao, shut up!

    True blue Manileno: If you’re not from Manila, go back to your province and stop working here, clogging our streets with trash and traffic!

    🙂 🙂 🙂

    • I think Alvarez reflects the totalitarian form of leadership the PH is heading toward, and we can expect that rights of free speech will definitely be curtailed. When government is ugly, it does not want comments describing its looks.

  3. daggernet says:

    Filipinos are Dogs eats Dogs…

  4. Micha says:

    Perversion of politics, check.
    Perversion of religion, check.
    Perversion of values, check.
    Perversion of humanity, check.
    Perversion of governance, check.

    Conclusion : Filipinos are, for the most part, self-destructing perverts.

    However, all that can be said of other countries and peoples as well, to a certain degree. So what is it, Ka Popoy, that makes our perverted sense of things particularly damning and paralyzing?

  5. Sup says:

    This one has Balls……

    Bangsamoro Transition Commission member Samira Gutoc-Tomawis quits after President Rodrigo Duterte’s controversial remarks about soldiers raping women and his martial law declaration

    http://www.rappler.com/nation/171473-samira-gutoc-tomawis-bangsamoro-resignation

  6. edgar lores says:

    *******
    1. Interesting proposition: Politics is the most valuable thing in the life of the people.

    2. Unsupported, the proposition may be rivaled by other claims which can take the place of the word “Politics” in the sentence:

    2.1. Economics
    2.2. Religion
    2.3. Hygiene
    2.3. Love

    3. However, the proposition is supported by two reasons:

    3.1. ”Politics is the authoritative allocation of values in a society.”
    3.2. ”Politics is who gets what, where, when and how.”

    4. These two are actually just one reason as the author admits. The second is just a dynamic elaboration of the first.

    4.1. Both reasons are functional descriptions of politics. The two do not define what politics is. They establish what politics does.

    4.2. A simple definition of politics would be: Politics is the science or art of governance.”

    4.3. But going back to the proffered definition, politics is said to allocate values but does not establish what those values are.

    This being so, would not the establishment of the values be (a) more important than, or (b) equally important as, their allocation?

    In either case, the validity of the proposition fails. Because politics is not comprehensive in and of itself. Because it is dependent on another domain. Because it is the tool and not the purpose. Because it is the means and not the ends.

    4.4. To put it another way, what is more important: the delivery of the pizza or the pizza itself?

    4.5. Politics is an abstraction. It is not a physical thing in the world. But, like energy, it is a real thing, a force. When someone says, “That’s politics,” what is she referring to? She is referring to actions, interactions, and their results in the domain of governance. Like the appointment of Mocha. And Mocha is not the topping we want on our pizza.

    5. What domain defines values? The post suggests religion. This was true before the Enlightenment but it no longer is. Morality can exist outside of religion. Ethics is the domain that defines values.

    5.1. In the Philippines, we see the failure of one religion to inculcate the values of not lying, not stealing, and not killing. In the other religion, we additionally see the failure to accept diversity.

    6. Church and State are separate. To deny this is to promote theocracy. The US and Canada are not theocracies. They are democracies that observe the principle of separation.

    In a theocracy, the tolerance, acceptance, and respect for holding and practicing divergent values are lost.
    *****

    • popoy says:

      Wow, WOW more wows from me. a blog here in TSOH can give birth and generate more values of discourse. Yours Edgar Lores I feel like Socratic but retorts could lead to splitting hairs. I take note:

      “I dare say that more than in the Philippines or in the United States that in Canada politics and religion blend well as symbiotic partners. The duo ideology seems oblivious of the fallible dictum commanding separation of the church from the state; in the bible render into Caesar what is Caesar and unto God what is God’s.”

      “6. Church and State are separate. To deny this is to promote theocracy. The US and Canada are not theocracies. They are democracies that observe the principle of separation.”
      But I still say: blending well, being oblivious of fallibility IS NOT DENYING IT. I’d rather reinforce that the separation precludes theocracy as it strengthens democracy UNLESS perverted by . . .deep discussions.

      “In a theocracy, the tolerance, acceptance, and respect for holding and practicing divergent values are lost.”

      Theocracy is itself a diverged value made up of many divergent values. Splitting hairs eh. I could be wrong but I won’t tell that to Imams who could be men of values, men of Honor for whom the doors of TSOH are always open — I presume.

      • popoy says:

        to obfuscate thoughts on politics on separation of church and state INTO a song:

        • popoy says:

          COME to think of it, man with woman, man with man, woman with woman can have and live together with rich love WITHOUT marriage, but religion and the law says Love (and sex) is made best and moral by being married in city hall or the church. Eh. Oy sige, kayo naman ang tumirada.

          • karlgarcia says:

            Common law marriage

            • popoy says:

              Thanks Karl. those three words are like three pictures germinating into three thousand words or meanings. Altogether and nitpicked it could be an oxymoron. If common law marriage is lawful why make it lawful when it is commonly damned down by common people. The law is harsh but is the law only for non-influential politicians. My point Karl is I am splitting hairs and not know it.

          • Bill In Oz says:

            Marriage as an institution, preceeded states & religions. Even tribal societies that have no established rulers of religions, have marriage. The role of the state is simply to record and recognise a marriage.

            As for religion, maybe if you believe in blessings, it’s role is to bless a marriage.

            It’s alwatds good to clarity about such matters. Lack of clarity or being unaware of the historical facts, leads to confused thinking

      • edgar lores says:

        *******
        6. The first point is well taken. There is a blending because the State recognizes the right to and of religion, and each religion tolerates each other.

        6.1. I am not sure that there is symbiosis — that is, interdependence. The State does not recognize the dominance of one religion and is not dependent on any. The churches do not pay taxes. Neither are the Churches dependent on the State economically.

        6.2. This is not to say that they are totally independent of each other. Religious rites are observed in important political events such as presidential inaugurations. Oaths are sworn on the Bible. Prayers are recited. And politically, the Churches depend on the State not to impose a State religion.

        6.3. The second point about the non-homogeneity of religions is also well taken. Definitely, there are divergent values within each religion. Hence, the presence of so many denominations and sects. Hence, the occurrence of schisms.
        *****

        • popoy says:

          Thanks for the elaboration Edgar. My knowledge of symbiosis between church and the state might be that of a simpleton tutored by biology. I saw in Canada Schools of denominations offering almost FREE EDUCATION, teach the children to be useful to themselves and the country as able citizens. In return they are given adequate funding from government coffers. In the Philippines and other countries for their minuscule part in governance they are exempt from taxes and also in return for expected efforts on their contributions to morality of the polity.

          The universe (modeled from man) exist because of symbiosis (or interdependence or whatever). Flora and Fauna do. Fauna exhale Co2 they inhaled O2 from flora. It’s not the birds and the bees; It is the birds and the trees; the flowers and the bees.

    • popoy says:

      ”When someone says, “That’s politics,” what is she referring to? She is referring to actions, interactions, and their results in the domain of governance. Like the appointment of Mocha. And Mocha is not the topping we want on our pizza.”

      Trying to be objective: The appointment of Mocha is “UTANG NA LOOB” not politics if we can believe many times unbelievable Pres Duterte when he said loud and crystal clear that some of his appointments will be out of gratitude. Mocha danced (skimpily attired?) and sang on the stage for him. Who’s the gentleman politician likely to forget that?

      • Edgar Lores says:

        *******
        Isn’t it? Isn’t it Duterte authoritatively allocating the value of the virtue of utang-na-loob to society, and authoritatively allocating the value of a government sinecure in behalf of Mocha?
        *****

        • popoy says:

          IT IS, it is Edgar, like a fish by my mouth I got it. BUT McLuhan’s massage I insist is still the MESSAGE: “I still think the title of this piece is “fitting and proper” if the people value most non-material things, Peace and order, Happiness, Integrity and Honesty, Beauty, traditional songs and music, and sufficient money.”

        • chemrock says:

          That’s a good one, Edgar.

  7. popoy says:

    “But going back to the proffered definition, politics is said to allocate values but does not establish what those values are.”

    As I read the piece again. . . He (Laswell) said “values as desired goals and power as the ability to participate in decisions .”

    I did try to elaborate on values: ” To me value simply means what the society value most is also what the people value most. As simple as that. Do the people value most non-material things? Peace and order? Happiness? Honor? Integrity and Honesty? Beauty? traditional songs and music , enough Money? etc.? Or do the people value more THEIR OPPOSITES like the pricey and signature things, anarchy, sadness, notoriety, dishonesty, ugliness, Rap or Hip Hap, excessive money, etc.?

    Value is a tricky word and could spew out inexact meanings. To me the word is positive, noble and sublime, never diminishes and uplifting. I still stuck to that belief even after we have studied Mary Racelis-Hollsteiner treatise on lowland Filipino values of “hiya,” “pakikisama,” “utang na loob, ” etc. which I think can have as well beneficial effects on, as it can as bad have devil-like insidious dominance on the practice of Philippines politics.”

    Which reminds me why I don’t when I in the past read here or in my email: The thing with Popoy is that after he has posted a piece, he does not participate in the discussion.

    “Stop! Leave it there. Don’t make it as clear as mud,” so says my Professor in Agronomy 3, about cereals mainly on rice culture. My Professor in Soils Science did not say mud as wet clay may appear dirty but it is chemically clean. Last word ko na ito, in this piece. Pinahahaba ko lang kasi, nagiging komplikado tuloy. Eh.

  8. NHerrera says:

    Politics is important. CHECK.
    Values are important. CHECK.

    HERE IS VIEW FROM ANOTHER ANGLE

    For convenience and simplicity, the values — without specifying the individual or detailed values — may be grouped into each of the following:

    * Country Ethics and Constitution
    * Pragmatism
    * Morality

    (The above are not my own, it comes from reading, with this modification: lumping the country’s Constitution with Ethics.)

    What then are the values in Philippine politics?

    My broad-brush nominal view:

    * The country’s current values in politics are heavy on Pragmatism group of values with a sprinkling of Ethics and Morality — especially as these latter become useful from time to time.

    * Former President B. Aquino and similarly-minded politicians were/ are relatively heavy, with some variation, on Ethics and Morality, and some dose of Pragmatism.

    * The Church as a political unit is heavy on face-value morality of right or wrong, dose of (sometimes high doses of) selfish (?) Pragmatism and a little of real Ethics.

  9. NHerrera says:

    BEWARE

    Here is one company’s — Share Lab — broad view from their analyses of the extent facebook knows about its facebook users, including, of course, politician-facebook-users. Facebook knows users politics, among others. FACEBOOK IS BIG BROTHER.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/business-39947942

  10. NHerrera says:

    Still on politics — this one on the political approaches of democracy.

    It is refreshing to me to read of statements from respected current leaders of countries who have gone through some violent, brutal political ways in their past; and who now under a hard-won, evolved, developed political system of democracy — like France, UK and Germany — speak of democratic approaches as against the quick fix we hear of the likes of such leaders as Trump and our own Duterte.

    http://opinion.inquirer.net/104420/democracy-trumps-terrorism#ixzz4ifgGh2Uq

    (Good night.)

  11. “The most valuable things in life are not measured in monetary terms. The really important things are not houses and lands, stocks and bonds, automobiles and real estate, but friendships, trust, confidence, empathy, mercy, love and faith.”

    –Bertrand Russell

    Since politics in PH is mostly about money and not public service, it is valuable to politicians and those who aspire to be one. The general PH populace? Not so much…

    I believe in participatory governance and democracy. I believe it is everyone’s civic duty to be vigilant and active in monitoring their government’s laws, regulations and policies. I do not believe it is the most valuable aspect of life but I think one should be aware of anything that may impact his/her life. Politics have an effect on both tangibles and intangibles in one’s life. Bad governance often results in bad economy (tangible) which may in turn affect one’s peace of mind (intangible).

    We need to stop letting politicians lead us by the nose. We have to become proactive in charting our own and our children’s future by being the “squeaky wheel” when our politicians need to be held accountable. We need to start holding them to higher standards and demand that they toe the line of civility and professionalism.

    • NHerrera says:

      JP,

      If I may, I detail your stated values under the Main Heading of Groups of Values
      I described above:

      CONSTITUTION AND ETHICS
      – friendships
      – trust
      – confidence
      – empathy
      – participatory governance and democracy
      – citizens awareness/ monitoring/ consequent action (“squeaky wheel”) on government activities/ policies impacting one’s life

      PRAGMATISM
      – monetary items
      – houses and lands
      – stocks and bonds
      – automobiles and real estate

      MORALITY
      – mercy
      – love
      – faith

  12. edgar lores says:

    *******
    ON VALUES

    1. There is confusion as to what values the government can allocate.

    1.1. The author has suggested the values can be non-material.
    1.2. NHerrera has suggested ethics and constitution, pragmatism, and morality.
    1.3. Juana has suggested non-material values such as friendships, trust, confidence, empathy, mercy, love, and faith.
    1.4. I initially thought the values were the resources – natural and otherwise – that the government could bestow. But when posting my first comment I can see that I leaned heavily on ethical values.

    2. I realized that there is a need for a taxonomy of values. I thought that the first approximation and distinction between material and non-material values would be a good start. But early on I ran into trouble. How, for instance, would one classify Education? It is non-material but the government builds school houses, offers scholarships, and lately free tuition.

    2.1. I also thought that Maslow’s Hierarchy would be another good starting point. Take, for example, physical security and food security. These are addressed by the government in the maintenance of military and police forces and in overseeing the importation of rice. But there are needs in Maslow, such as the ones enumerated by Juana, that go beyond the government’s purview and competence.

    3. Then I realized that there is no need for a taxonomy as there is already one. This is reflected in the organization of the Executive Branch. The various departments, cabinet-level or otherwise, name the values and services that the government allocates.

    3.1. One can go beyond the departments and include the commissions and perhaps even the NGOs.

    3.2. There is the National Commission for Culture and the Arts that would encompass our cultural traits, our folk dances, and music.

    3.2. On the other hand, there are values that are not covered. Like the value of gift-giving that the Executive practices with members of Congress.

    3.3. All in all, I would suggest that the organization of departments and commissions may be the best manifestation of the values and services that the government dispenses.
    *****

  13. NHerrera says:

    QUESTIONS ON VALUES — ALTHOUGH SOMEWHAT OFF TANGENT FROM THE BLOG

    Two academic questions:

    * What is the Ethics and Morality of the US insistence, through Trump, on all NATO members paying the agreed share on NATO’s expenses?

    * What is the Ethics and Morality of the US insistence, through Trump, to get out of the
    much sought International Agreement on Climate Change (Note: Trump still has to decide Thursday, dateline Washington).

    From the viewpoint of both International and US National political viewpoint, I believe, the FIRST is Pragmatic, Ethical, and Moral — taking aside the manner of the crude delivery of the message.

    The SECOND may be narrowly pragmatic from US viewpoint, but may not be from an international viewpoint. Further, considering the push by the US on the Agreement pre-Trump and considering the many scientists US and elsewhere endorsing the Agreement, it is not ethical from an International viewpoint. Is it ethical from a US national viewpoint? Is it moral, or does morality come into the picture at all?

    • Edgar Lores says:

      *******
      The first is ethical.

      The second is unethical.

      Last question: It depends on how you define morality and distinguish it from ethics.
      *****

    • To me, both ethics and morality define right and wrong in thought and deed, with ethics typically associated with the pragmatics of a job and morality with the broader sense of how we care for one another. The ethics of Trump’s demand is centered on free expression, with the morality being an underlying sense of fairness. Those nations behind in their payments probably have split ethical demands, one to NATO and one to their nation’s well-being. God never promised us a rose garden.

      The climate change positioning is ethically justifiable (it is Trump’s job to make America great), and morally reprehensible (he is sacrificing all humanity for a dollar).

      Excellent questions. Challenging.

      • edgar lores says:

        *******
        1. I agree with the definitions.

        2. If I may expand and elaborate:

        2.1. In common talk, the terms morality and ethics are interchangeable because they deal with the observance of normative rules.
        2.2. Morality is usually associated with religious/cultural norms.
        2.2. Ethics is usually associated with workplace or professional norms.

        3. Thus we say:

        3.1. A person who does not observe one of God’s commandments is immoral. And he has committed a sin. A sin may be atoned (by good works) or not at all (by eternal damnation).
        3.2. A person who does not observe a rule of his profession is unethical. And he has committed a breach. A breach may be atoned (by fine or suspension) or not at all (by the revocation of license).

        4. A professional may be both moral in his personal life, according to his religion and/or culture, and ethical in his professional life. Or he may be immoral but ethical. Or he may be moral but unethical. Or he may be both immoral and unethical.

        4.1. From the viewpoint of Christian morality, Duterte is immoral. From the viewpoint of the Constitution, he is unethical.

        4.2. But from the viewpoint of Filipino culture, he is considered moral.

        5. So far, we are seeing ethics from a narrow perspective. Ethics has a wider perspective from the viewpoint of philosophy. In fact, Ethics, and not morality, is one of the main branches of philosophy. From this wider perspective, ethics is the investigation of the various religious and cultural moralities in order to arrive at the foundational ethical system(s) and foundational values that may be true for all men and for all time.

        5.1. Ethics is the philosophy (or science) of morality, morality the practice of a particular form of ethics.
        5.2. Generally, morality is sectarian, ethics secular.
        5.3. Morality is local, ethics universal.

        5.4.Accordingly, I would use the term “ethics” to characterize international relationships. China, with respect to the West Philippine Sea dispute, is unethical but not immoral. America, with respect to the Paris agreement and other international conventions like UNCLOS and the Rome Statute, is also unethical but not immoral.

        6. The above nuances and judgments are my personal views, and in the absence of widespread consensus, contentious. But when I use the term ethics, it is usually from this wider perspective.
        *****

    • NHerrera says:

      Well, it is done. The news is that Trump declared that the US is getting out of the Climate Change Agreement. I understand though that there is a process involved in “getting out” such that the process may extend to the period close to the second US Presidential Election.

  14. Bing Garcia says:

    In a research note late Wednesday, the debt watcher Moody’s Investors Service said the ongoing siege and imposition of martial law will not materially impact the country’s robust near-term economic outlook. We expect the impact on economic activity from the crisis in Marawi to be minimal and short-lived, it noted.

    • karlgarcia says:

      I hope they are correct.

    • Thanks for that bit of info. I would note that you previously posted comments touting the “golden years” of Marcos martial law, and several people rebutted the argument with facts. You did not respond to those postings. This is a discussion forum and I would resist your use of the blog to post agenda-based promotional materials as ‘hit and run’ postings. Essentially, that would be posting spam, and I delete such materials routinely.

    • You cherry picked that article, Bing. There were caveats to your overly optimistic take of Moody’s statement. Here they are:

      * “However, if recent events lead to prolonged uncertainty around security or governance, such a development would eventually dampen business confidence and, consequently, economic outcomes”

      * “However, although unlikely to happen, potential challenges to the constitutional system of checks and balances could arrest or reverse the improvements in the rule of law over the past few years”

      *” However, beyond the immediate implications of the crisis in Marawi, President Duterte has publicly stated his willingness to bypass safeguards provided by the constitution against the arbitrary declaration of martial law, including the power of Congress and the Supreme Court to review, and even revoke, martial law”

      http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/money/economy/612873/economic-impact-of-mindanao-martial-law-limited-says-moody-s/story/

      It means that what you stated are not the only possible outcomes. Other factors (the one stated above) need to be considered because some of them may take the result to the other side of the continuum. It means that Moody’s positive outlook is not written in stone.

      Kindly present both sides of the coin for fair and informative discussion. I like that you take sides but please try not to omit the “cons” for fuller discernment.

  15. popoy says:

    Awesome, inspiring are the modest superlative words that came to mind after reading so far the comments of TSOHerians. Politics was zoomed in and zoomed out for sharper or blurred focus; amplified and demagnified, overvalued and undervalued, using the stringent rods of science and the affective senses of the arts; to bejewel fertile imagination into wisdom. I was I feel like transported to the fourth dimension (4D) of Socrates’ Lyceum where illusions and delusions of atmospheric minds never happened. Believe you me these predecessor words are understatements albeit flowery and stilted. But let me, mental time traveler be, let my consciousness light travel back from 4D to 3D: 6:00 am June 1st 2017 somewhere in the northern hemisphere. AND BE ANECDOTAL.
    ————–
    Rizal Hall in Padre Faura was my university of hard knocks where I was first rejected enrolment to its masteral program in public administration. It was what remains of the old UP campus after powerful squatters like the Departments of Justice and Foreign Affairs. the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals like their toothless and unwashed penurious counterparts in urban elsewhere, took over and made their own the land and old UP Buildings.

    In that space I found honest bread for a living. It was where my reports not worthy of publication in academic journals I earned my pay for non-teaching service to the UP System. Like writing non-fiction waffles and palliatives for example (don’t remember now exact titles) : The Structure and Functions: Organizing the University of the Philippines Manila co-chaired with Dr. Antonio Gonzaga, M.D.; two reports about tails wagging dogs, oiling the friction between dog and tail organizational interface of two colleges and sub units specifically the College of Medicine (Dean Cuasi Romualdez) and its UP-Philippine General Hospital (Dr. Salceda). Ditto for the College of Law (Dean Froilan Bacungan) and its Law Center (Director Atty later SC Justice Flerida Ruth Romero) , The reports were not about Professor- Administrators nor people and politics. But were about academe organizations struggling to float with their plenitude of goals and objectives and activities in an ocean of scarcity. The names are for checking this blog’s veracity lest this be labelled as FAKE BLOG. However and moreover THIS IS NOT ABOUT ME.

    • Edgar Lores says:

      *******
      Salud!
      *****

    • popoy says:

      THIS IS ABOUT A SENIOR COLLEAGUE, Professor JDS, a PhD in Political Science who authored the first and probably the only book on Philippine Public Fiscal Administration. This colleague became relevant in this blog because politics has been commented on also as governance or public administration, the bureaucracy (departments) reflecting desired and needed values of the people, values could be contextualized in Abraham Maslow’s Theory of Motivation in a hierarchy of needs, etc, etc,

      Will it not be nice if a junior faculty share with TSOHerians some academic fruit juice of long ago which to outsiders had remained unshared inside the college faculty conference room? There were about a dozen more less faculty members who sit around the conference table, others preferred to sit on the chairs by the wall. Conversations momentarily ceased every time Dr. JDS comes in and sits in the chair by the wall. Then, he interrupts with something like “Before we do or discuss anything else can we just resolve the question I have asked many times before: IS PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION TEACHABLE? Can we resolve that first before continuing on other matters? I don’t remember any remark among the faculty may be because my mind was busy thinking: By God! we could all be jobless. There were many seconds of silence. I also thought at the time that there is no degree or course on Public Admin in Britain or its Commonwealth Countries. Their Administrative Staff Colleges took care of training public officers and public servants. Time it seemed more than the faculty had put that question in effective abeyance.

      Wonder and respect is what I have for the professor Dr. JDS. He went to the UP System President and suggested but was turned down to be appointed University Professor of Political Economy (when the discipline was still a toddler). i did not know his views about Martial Law, but he kept on being arrested and detained for violating curfew until the soldiers got tired and just let him be as he walk from home to office at 3 am daily to start his office hours. I think he was working then on his theory of social mathematics. Dr. JDS was many and varied persona to colleagues and students. I know no others but only one student got the guts, A VP admin staff enrolled in his class and still single then she has an American name (surnamed Huntington). I left UP-NCPAG to become an OFW.

      • popoy says:

        Regardless of being resolved or not the question IS PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION TEACHABLE did not prevent the discipline to grow and grow with the times. In East Timor (Timor Leste) as it revives the old and establishes a new civil service I blabbered to new and returning public servants as they peacekeep and peacebuild their new nation this esoteric definition of public administration:

        Public administration is a river
        with its own hydrologic cycle
        of many or no returns from the sky
        This river has enormous watershed
        Soak with the arts along side
        social and natural sciences
        Politics, Economics, Medicine,
        Sociology, Psychology and more
        in themselves become tributaries
        of theory and practice of values
        of the GOOD LIFE.

  16. popoy says:

    can’t help but write a retort on this:

    “2. Unsupported, the proposition may be rivaled by other claims which can take the place of the word “Politics” in the sentence:
    2.1. Economics
    2.2. Religion
    2.3. Hygiene
    2.3. Love”

    I will accept the rivaled claims by others as OBJECTIVE AND WORTH A LISTEN TO after seeing or knowing who is talking. Say If the claim comes from a GURO and not from

    a dirty politician paying homage to politics
    a rich economist saying alleluias for Economics
    a Pope or a Cardinal selling heaven for Religion
    a medical doctor pontificating on Hygiene
    a lothario painting the beauty of Love

    My point attempts at common sense against the authority of expertise and political correctness.

    Contradicting myself, Picasso might had been a good lover, but he had admirable masterpieces on Love..

  17. Bill In Oz says:

    I have not followed this conversation. Too much else happening.

    But this evening I was sent this link to an article in the Atlantic magazine by a Filipino living in the USA. It is an extraordinary and true story of his Filipino family in the USA and the most important member in it : a slave named Lola.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/06/lolas-story/524490/

    • I read the article before and a lot of PH media had covered the story. There are a couple of Rappler articles about it too.

      In the western lens of Fil-Ams exposed to the western culture, it may be considered as slavery but in Filipino culture (eastern lens), it is seen as quid pro quo. Lola was a poor relative who was promised food and shelter if she promised to look after a single military man’s daughter. Both parties kept their promises.

      How many Filipinos had “Lolas” in thier homes while we were growing up? Full disclosure, my family had a few. They usually came to us because their family wanted “one less mouth to feed.” My mother made sure that they were treated fairly and humanely. The children in my household were told to defer to them and call them “Ate.” It was clear that they were to be treated as older sisters. All of them went to school, pursued vocations, and got married. The last time I was in PH, one of them still comes every morning to help out and goes home to her family in the evening.

      How did you feel about the story, Bill?

      • Bill In Oz says:

        It was also on GMA Juana as my lady told me after I posted the link.

        I am an Australian Juana and Australians have a simple take on such a story : it was slavery. The 2 Filipinos parents involved were abusive and liars. They were not people with any honor. Knowing how such a ‘situation’ should work, do you defend their behaviour ?

        I advise any Filipinos with such slave like family ‘servants’ considering migrating here, to not bother. They will be arrested and if convicted, jailed and then at the end of the their jail terms deported and never allowed back into Australia.

        I respect and admire the son for his frank, honest and moving account of his own family’s history and his own path to redemption.

        And I feel that the if the Philippines is to become a modern nation, this needs to be changed.

        • chemrock says:

          Bill, western sentiments on this sort of thing, such as yours, is understandable. You see things through black and white legal books. Other communities that live under economic status many times removed from decent levels as compared to 1st world countries view things differently. I’m not saying whether it’s right, it’s one of those things difficult to judge. If there was coercion on the part of one giving shelter, then it’s totally wrong.

          Even in Spore in the past, there were such incidences. I had a distant relative that stayed with us when I was young. We were poor then, but the relative was desperately poor with 5 Kids to feed. So one boy stayed with us. There was no forced labour, he ate what we ate and shared my bed. The end result for him was his school grades improved because he had food and he was immersed in an educated family so he kinda picked things up. Sure he does chores like the rest of us.

          • I was going to write something similar. The underlying difference between Australia and the Philippines is wretched poverty in the Philippines, along with a culturally imposed hierarchical ranking of peoples by stature, rather than the idealistic form of equality that we Western ‘neo-liberals’ seek. I don’t see household workers as slaves, but as workers with few opportunities. They’d rather have their job than starve or suffer.

            • Bill In Oz says:

              Joe, I am no “Western neo liberal”. In fact I think I am conservative in my thinking.

              The ‘globalised neo liberal’ cares not a fig for people, provided goods & services from anywhere, are cheap. They care not that the cheap price reflects enormous exploitation of ordinary people and the massive dislocation of less important folk in their own countries

              • Okay, we can discuss neo-liberalism some time. The point is that western values of equality and fair treatment don’t really exist here, except among a few educated and traveled people.

        • “The 2 Filipinos parents involved were abusive and liars. They were not people with any honor. Knowing how such a ‘situation’ should work, do you defend their behavior”?

          I am not defending their behavior, Bill. “Lola” was abused and taken advantage of by the Tizon parents in the story. There is no defense for abuse and cruelty of any human being or any living thing. All I am saying is not all Filipino helpers are treated as slaves and the Tizon parents behavior is not the norm.

          As Manong NHerrera said below, most Filipino families who have helpers treat them with respect and dignity. There is less drama than the Tizon’s and the helper and the helpee usually live in harmony.

          • Bill In Oz says:

            I understand what you are saying Juana. What riles me is that this lovely natured woman was exploited shamelessly by her ‘owners ( ? ) for 50 odd years.. I noted the pasrt where she was promised some income to send home to relatives, and that she could go home to family.

            That did not happen while her owner was alive. It happened when the owner’s son aware of the enormous wrong being done, took her into his own home, provided income & her own bedroom .

            In my lady’s ow family there are 2 lovely young children living in my mother-in-law’s home : a grandson & a nephew. Lorna cares for these kids like her own with little help from the actual parents. And they are never exploited. It is very different to what is in the narrative.

    • NHerrera says:

      Bill, thanks for sharing this — a lovely story. It has a stamp of the Filipino and Filipino drama all over it.

      JP, I had a similar experience as you. I was fortunate that my father and mother were both professionals, MD and pharmacist, respectively, and so compared to the Dad and Mom of the author of the article in the link, had an easier way about it — different temperament too, after the read of the link. My parent’s katulongs, man and woman, eventually married and came to live with me and my wife and children. (Much less drama as the story in the article.)

    • karlgarcia says:

      My dad lived with better off relatives while in High School and he went with them to Manila, For his first year in college then he went to the PMA. ( I am not sure now, if that is another relative in Manila)
      As a quid quo pro, he did the household chores.
      When I was young, I had relatives for my yaya(nanny).

  18. I found the article below to be very interesting and perceptive. It made me wonder how my son, an IT Security Analyst by trade but a prolific writer, would write about a trip with me to PH. He told me not so long ago that when he read about PRD’s war on drugs, he was so angry and embarrassed that he stopped telling people that he is part Filipino. I told him I felt the same way.

    Here is an excerpt from the article that is pertinent to popoy’s idea:

    …”much of Philippine politics seemed to exist within a vast gray area between right and wrong, and nobody’s heart was pure, and there were no saviors — only people navigating an entrenched system. While Duterte might be willing to kill in an effort to upend that system, he had still come up through the same old passages to power. “

    https://www.buzzfeed.com/albertsamaha/why-do-filipinos-love-duterte?utm_term=.kkjMWPyw6j#.piRxJ5DgKL

    • edgar lores says:

      *******
      Thanks, Juana.
      *****

    • popoy says:

      I followed the link given by Juana Pilipinas and started reading Robert Samaha. I stopped a third of the way. I felt like a bird, a Balud (Balur to the Dumagats) of the Rizal part of the Sierra Madre. The forest may be high and wide of rain soaked bushes and spooky looking Balite trees but as a Balud looking like a hybrid of beauty of a majestic parrot (loro) , the speed of a bato-bato (Zebra or turtle dove) and the effeminate elegance of a kalapati (urban pigeon), I live and die may be by a hunter’s bullet or by old age in my limited territory from which I can go no farther. And who would care and notice?

      I am neither a stranger nor a tree in Samaha’s forests and felt lucky, thankful it is not yet a desert. Enough of my eche bucheche with words and be a young guro again.

      Samaha first third of the way I’d give an A Plus. Excellent Read. But the way being of all guros I hastened to describe the visit as less what was, more what is and niggardly what should be. It is descriptive, not normative. It is long and broad but not deep enough. It gave no hints for an anti-thesis for a thesis of decay and decadence; as It did not go as far to answer the smart alecky : SO WHAT? My point here Ms Juana and Mr Robert, the teacher me is not always right and may be grossly unfair to students in their quest for truth. It is wrong to expect synthesis in every piece.

      A digression of impertinence: for a classic entertainment look for the link on THE VISIT to see Ingrid Bergman and Anthony Quinn. I would like to see it again tonight after 53 years.

      • popoy says:

        Robert Samaha I think shall live long happy with his muses. I yearn for and missed the works of Quijano de Manila and will not forget the succinct advice in a rejection slip sent to me by Celso Al. Carunungan : BE CAREFUL WITH YOUR LANGUAGE. I did and grew old until carefree to write again after retirement.

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