Kapanalig Sa Wala - Literally, one who also have faith in nothing, is a play on words and wasn't really intended to mean something. It was made in jest to call the atheist camp when I was still actively debating god in one of the demised public forums out there. I think walang pananalig (faithless) would have proven to be more precise but I think the intended humor will be lost.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Philippine democracy is a farce

If the Filipino masses are intelligent enough to collectively arrive at decisions that are well argued and well thought of, our democracy will be a lot better shape than it is now. With the upcoming election, it's so obvious that our "democracy" is a cosmic farce. It will be proven once again when the votes are cast and counted, the winners announced. This is true at the local level, this is true for the national level. Our criteria and mechanism for choosing our public servants and leaders are irrational and not reliable. It is to the interest of the powers-that-be that the status quo be undisturbed. They need to keep the masses in line in order for them to continue to rule and enrich themselves. Our system is nothing but a public battle ground for families aspiring for power. Some things never change. We still have the ago-go Oreta of the Aquino clan as Exhibit A for this madness. We have old dynasties persisting, and new ones in the making. To my fellow Pinoys: congratulations, you deserve the clowns.

1 comment:

DP said...

I agree. It seems to me that for democracy to work, there must be some minimum level of intelligence and education present in the majority, or else we might as well choose our leaders by flipping a coin.

It goes deeper, though. I think the main problem is not one of intelligence, but rather a sense of ACCOUNTABILITY, a sense of what's right and wrong -- and more powerfully, the ability to be OFFENDED when injustices or abuses occur.

One need not have a genius-level IQ to have a basic sense of justice -- even toddlers cry when something is taken from them by force. In contrast, witness how easily we forgive and forget when the very basics of life -- freedom, well-being, and our very future -- are taken from us not only by force but under the guise of benevolence and good will, as when politicians give you three hundred pesos in "rally fees" so they can steal from your children a thousand or even five. We have learned too well the lesson of forgiveness, and not well enough the lessons of justice and of being accountable for one's actions.

Perhaps, counter-intuitively, we need to be *more* selfish, to think about ourselves, to get rid of this tendency to accept martyrdom as a fact of life. We should ask for and insist on a higher standard of conduct from public officials, and indeed from everyone around us, most especially ourselves.